BD has signed a definitive agreement to sell 50.1% of its Respiratory Solutions business to funds advised by Apax Partners, a leading global private equity firm. The companies will form a joint venture that will operate as a new, independent company, according to a BD press release. BD will retain 49.9% of the company as a significant but non-controlling minority owner.

The new company will include all business lines within BD’s Respiratory Solutions business including Ventilation, Respiratory Diagnostics, Vital Signs and AirLife, and have estimated annual revenue of approximately $900 million, according to BD. The transaction is expected to close in late fiscal year 2016 or early fiscal year 2017.

“We have determined that the Respiratory Solutions business and its associates will be best served under a different ownership model that will provide more strategic focus and investment to grow the business into a pure-play, global respiratory care leader,” said Tom Polen, president of BD’s Medical Segment. “We believe in Apax Partners’ track record of success creating value and improving margins, and as part of the joint venture, we will continue to have a strong interest in the growth and success of the business.”

BD’s Respiratory Solutions facilities will transfer to the new company, including locations in Yorba Linda, Calif; Palm Springs, Calif; Plymouth, Minn; Mexicali, Mexico; Cotia, Brazil; Hoechberg, Germany; and Shenzen, China. The new company will employ more than 5,000 associates around the world.