R.Y. Narayanan

Coimbatore, June 17

SAMI Labs Ltd (SLL) - which manufactures products based on medicinal herbal plants - is looking for acquisitions in Europe, the US and India.

The company expects to double the sales turnover during the current year, according to Dr Muhammed Majeed, Managing Director, SLL, Bangalore.

Speaking to Business Line in Coimbatore on Thursday, he said the company's products were used in the treatment of diseases such as cardiovascular problems, arthritis, osteoporosis, and for achieving weight loss. Its product for achieving weight loss contributed nearly 30 per cent to the turnover and the US, Japan and Europe were the biggest markets for this product.

He said during Jan-Dec 2004, SLL recorded a turnover of Rs 259 crore and the profit was around 10 per cent of sales. During the current year, he expects the turnover to be over Rs 500 crore and profit to be in the range of 15 per cent. He said during the current year, the company would be investing Rs 55 crore in additional manufacturing facilities and about Rs 30 crore in medicinal plants cultivation initiative.

Apart from the Salem belt in Tamil Nadu, where the company has gone for large scale contract farming of the medicinal herb `Coleus forskohlii' (wild tulsi) used in weight management, it was also negotiating with the Governments in Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh for its cultivation that required large investment.

As the company expanded, it would like to enlarge its product profile - after Coleus, it would be entering into cultivation of turmeric, red clover etc and the question of getting saturated in the near future was "totally out of question", he said.

Asked about his plans to go for a public issue, Dr Majeed said he was looking for an opportunity to `get into something bigger' before going public. He was on the look out for acquisitions in the US, and Europe and was not averse to the idea of acquiring a company in India too. If any of one of these possibilities materialises, then IPO may be the platform to achieve it.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated June 18, 2005)
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