UDG Healthcare has sold its 50% stake in UniDrug Distribution Group to its joint venture partner Alliance Boots for €82m.

UniDrug provides pre-wholesale supply chain solutions to the healthcare industry in the UK and offers specialist storage, fulfilment and distribution centres. 

UDG said that after the sale it will continue its long term relationship for wholesale service provision to Alliance Boots on the island of Ireland.

The company said it received a net after tax profit contribution from UniDrug of €5.6m last year. It said the proceeds of the sale will use to to pay down company debt and for general corporate purposes. 

UDG's chief executive Liam FitzGerald said that with the continuing convergence of the pre-wholesale and wholesale markets in the UK, UniDrug has a reduced fit with its core Supply Chain Services operations on the island of Ireland.

"The opportunity to exit the joint venture allows UDG Healthcare to release over €80m to both reduce debt and for further investment in areas of our business which fit strategically with the future development of the group," Mr FitzGerald added.