Global drinks can manufacturer Rexam has agreed to sell its pharmaceutical devices and prescription retail packaging units to Montagu Private Equity for $805m.

The two business units employed 1,500 people and recorded sales of £250m in 2012.

The transaction is subject to consultation with several European works councils. It would be completed in mid-2014.

Rexam plans to return approximately £450m to shareholders from the sale through a redeemable B share scheme along with a share consolidation.

Rexam CEO Graham Chipchase said that the sale of its healthcare business divisions is part of a plan to maximise shareholder value.

"The pharmaceutical devices and prescription retail packaging divisions represent the majority of the value of our healthcare business," Chipchase added.

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"Following the sale of healthcare, we will be a focused beverage cans business with a strong financial position."

Rexam is also holding talks regarding the sale of its closures and containers division, which makes plastic bottles for over-the-counter medicine.