Nestlé is set to snap up the infant nutrition business of pharmaceutical giant Pfizer in a deal worth at least $9bn (£5.64bn).

The Swiss food giant is in position to secure a deal by the end of the month, having fought off a rival bid backed by Danone.

Pfizer’s formula milk business generates sales of more than $2bn a year, mostly from emerging markets. A deal would significantly strengthen Nestlé’s position in China, analysts said.

“Overall, this deal makes huge strategic sense for Nestlé,” said Bernstein’s Andrew Wood. “It is in the right categories and the right markets.”