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Takeda to keep over-the-counter drug unit

Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. CEO Christophe Weber said the company will likely hold on to its over-the-counter drug unit, Reuters reported.

Although Tokyo-based Takeda is facing pressure to boost finances ahead of the closing of its £46 billion acquisition of Shire PLC, divesting the unit is not the company's first priority, Weber said at a news conference.

He added that Takeda has some businesses outside Japan that are "not really performing."

The company expects to close the takeover of Shire on Jan. 8, having already received shareholder and regulatory approvals.

Takeda has secured $29.7 billion in bank loans, Reuters noted. In December 2018, the drugmaker received a loan of up to $3.7 billion from state-owned Japan Bank for International Cooperation.

CFO Costa Saroukos previously told Japanese paper Nikkei Asian Review that the company plans to divest $10 billion worth of noncore assets to ease debt burden from the Shire deal.