To spearhead plans to enter Chinese, Asia-Pacific markets

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Plans ahead


The acquisition

would be through internally funds and partly through debt.

This is

the company's fifth overseas buy in the last couple of years.

The company

acquired manufactures conventional pharma products in the form of tablets, capsules, liquids and creams.

Bangalore, Sept. 1

Strides Arcolab has announced signing an approximately Rs 60-crore deal to acquire the Singapore-based branded generics company, Drug Houses of Australia (Asia) P Ltd (DHA).

DHA will spearhead Strides's plans to enter Chinese and Asia-Pacific markets and help create a regional brand in the long run, Strides said in a release here.

DHA, established in 1969, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Haw Par Healthcare Ltd (of Tiger Balm fame) - a leading branded generics player in Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong.

Regional brand

Mr Arun Kumar, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, Strides Arcolab, said Strides's strategy was to grow regionally alongside striking global partnerships.

The acquisition would be through internally funds and partly through debt; a few routine NOCs are due and the transaction will be completed during September, Mr Ravi Shankar, Executive Director, told

Business Line

.

This would be the company's fifth overseas buy in the last couple of years, after the ones in Poland (100 per cent buy at $8 million); Italy (70 per cent stake in Beltapharm SpA for 1.6 million) and earlier in Brazil (around 66 per cent).

The pact

The share purchase agreement provides for Strides Singapore Pte Ltd (an indirect, wholly-owned subsidiary of Strides Arcolab,) to fully acquire DHA for a consideration of approximately S$19.7 million.

According to Mr Ravi Shankar, Strides currently has a small presence in Asia and expects to enlarge this by riding on DHA's brand equity in the Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong markets.

For the financial year ended December 2005, it posted sales revenue of S$ 16.36 million (around Rs 50 crore) and PAT of S$2.72 million (around Rs 7.5 crore).

DHA has a GMP-certified manufacturing facility in Jurong, Singapore's industrial hub, and manufactures conventional pharma products in the form of tablets, capsules, liquids and creams.

It lacks product development skills but could be ramped up and be a launch pad for the parent's injectables in South-East Asia.

Strides would be getting its 14th manufacturing facility, spread across India, the US, Brazil, Mexico, Poland and Italy.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated September 2, 2006)
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