PARIS, Jan. 10 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Sanofi-aventis announced today the official change in the legal denomination of the Aventis Pasteur company, which will henceforth be named sanofi pasteur.
The General Meeting of Shareholders of Aventis Pasteur, held in December 2004, voted the change in name from Aventis Pasteur to sanofi pasteur. The Aventis Pasteur MSD joint venture, equally owned by Aventis Pasteur and Merck & Co. Inc., which markets vaccines in en Europe, also changes its denomination to sanofi pasteur MSD.
The heritage of sanofi pasteur in the field of human vaccines is outstanding and has been handed down to us by major historical figures such as Louis Pasteur, Marcel Merieux and Charles Merieux as well as John Fitzgerald, the founder of Connaught Laboratories. All of them have marked the history of vaccinations.
Today sanofi pasteur proposes the largest range of vaccines, offering prevention against 20 bacterial and viral diseases.
Faithful to its history, and fortified by the commitment of the sanofi- aventis Group in the area of vaccines, sanofi pasteur will pursue its public health mission worldwide.
The vaccine division of the sanofi-aventis Group, sanofi pasteur, is one of the worldwide leaders in this field. It offers pediatric combination vaccines, influenza vaccines, polio vaccines, meningitis vaccines, adult boosters and a range of vaccines for travellers and endemic areas. In 2003, 1.4 billion vaccine doses were administered to more than 500 million people. Sales in 2003 reached 1.6 billion euros. The division has more than 8,500 employees in the world including 4,300 in France. Its Headquarters are located in Lyon, France.
Sanofi-aventis is the world's 3rd largest pharmaceutical company, ranking number 1 in Europe. Backed by a world-class R&D organization, sanofi-aventis is developing leading positions in seven major therapeutic areas: cardiovascular disease, thrombosis, oncology, diabetes, central nervous system, internal medicine, vaccines. Sanofi-aventis is listed in Paris (EURONEXT: SAN) and in New York .
Forward Looking Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts. These statements include financial projections and estimates and their underlying assumptions, statements regarding plans, objectives and expectations with respect to future operations, products and services, and statements regarding future performance. Forward-looking statements are generally identified by the words "expect," "anticipates," "believes," "intends," "estimates" and similar expressions. Although sanofi-aventis' management believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, investors are cautioned that forward-looking information and statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties, many of which are difficult to predict and generally beyond the control of sanofi-aventis, that could cause actual results and developments to differ materially from those expressed in, or implied or projected by, the forward-looking information and statements. These risks and uncertainties include those discussed or identified in the public filings with the SEC and the AMF made by Sanofi-aventis and Aventis, including those listed under "Forward-Looking Statements" and "Risk Factors" in sanofi-aventis's annual report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2003 and those listed under "Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements" and "Risk Factors" in Aventis's annual report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2003. Other than as required by applicable law, sanofi-aventis does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking information or statements.
CONTACT: Jean-Marc Podvin
Vice President, Media Relations
Charles F. Rouse III