The Associated Press reported that Johnson & Johnson plans to split into two companies over the next two years, with one company focused on prescription drugs and medical devices while the other focused on health care products such as Band-Aids and Listerine. J&J on Friday said the split was to boost the momentum and focus of each of the employed companies as they seek to keep up with their respective industry trends.

- Advertisement -

“After a comprehensive review, the Board and management team believe that the planned separation of the consumer health business will create opportunities for our talented global team to accelerate our efforts to serve patients, consumers and healthcare professionals. , is the best way to drive profitable growth, and – most important – improve health care outcomes for people around the world,” CEO Alex Gorsky said in a statement.

- Advertisement -

The Johnson & Johnson name will go to the company that sells medical devices for orthopedics and surgery and treatments such as Darzalex, Erleda and Imbruvica. The company’s pharmaceutical arm also manufactures a single-dose COVID-19 vaccine, one of three currently authorized in the US

The other company, which will focus on J&J brands such as Neutrogena, Aveeno, Band-Aid and Listerine, is yet to be named.

- Advertisement -

J&J, founded in 1886, is the largest manufacturer of health products in the world. The potential split still needs to be approved by the company’s board of directors.

For more reporting from The Associated Press, see below:

Pharmaceuticals and medical devices combined generated revenue of $19.6 billion in the company’s recently completed third quarter, which turned out to be better than analysts expected. Consumer health brought in $3.7 billion.

J&J is beginning its split as it also undergoes a leadership change. The company said in August that Gorsky would step down and be replaced in January by longtime company executive Joaquin Duato.

The division comes even as J&K criticizes some Democrats in Congress over another corporate ploy. J&J is facing thousands of lawsuits over claims that its talc-based baby powder, which it has stopped selling in the US and Canada, caused ovarian cancer.

U.S. Senators Dick Durbin of Illinois and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts recently sent a letter to the company asking for more information about a newly created subsidiary that filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

In a November 10 letter, senators called the move a “corporate shell game” that would protect the company from liability in those cases.

Company officials said Friday that their announcement was “different and different” from the situation in baby powder.

J&J’s announcement on Friday comes just days after General Electric said it plans to split into three separate companies.

It follows similar moves by other large health care firms that sought to reduce their focus. Rival drugmaker Pfizer Inc. spun off its consumer health products business in 2019 to help form a joint venture with GlaxoSmithKline.

Another drugmaker, Merck & Co. Inc., fell short in June with a spinoff that spun off its Organ Women’s Health unit with businesses selling biosimilars, or near-copies of pricey biologics, and off-the-shelf drugs such as the respiratory drug Singulair. Paired with Patent Prior Blockbuster. Nasonex.

Shares of New Brunswick, New Jersey-based Johnson & Johnson climbed more than 3 percent before the market opened. The company has been a constituent of the Dow Jones Industrial Average since 1997.