Mylan-Upjohn combine to be known as Viatris

PT Jyothi Datta Mumbai | Updated on November 13, 2019 Published on November 13, 2019

The combined entity will have international brands such as cholesterol drug Lipitor, erectile dysfunction drug Viagra and arthritic pain medication Celebrex within its fold

Viatris, it is. More than three months after Mylan said it would combine with Upjohn, a division of Pfizer, the two companies have announced that the new combined entity will be called Viatris. “Deriving it’s name from Latin, Viatris embodies the new company’s goal of providing a path — “VIA” — to three — “TRIS” — core goals: expanding access to medicines, leading by innovating to meet patient needs, and being a trusted partner for the healthcare community worldwide,” a note from the company said.

Robert J Coury, who will serve as Executive Chairman of the new company, as indicated earlier, said: “We are creating a company unlike any other — a company focussed on building a more hopeful and sustainable healthcare journey, empowering patients to live healthier at every stage of life.”

Global giant

In July, US-headquartered Mylan had said that it would combine with Upjohn, Pfizer’s off-patent branded medicines business, to create a new global pharmaceuticals company. The mega transaction was expected to give the combined entity a foothold in China, besides bringing into its fold international brands such as Lipitor (for cholesterol), Viagra (erectile dysfunction) and Celebrex (arthritic pain), among others.

“The name Viatris communicates the strength of our companies’ combined heritage and our shared goal to provide the highest-quality medicines to the most patients possible,” said Michael Goettler, Group President, Upjohn, who will serve as Chief Executive Officer of Viatris.

Viatris will unite Upjohn’s strong leadership position in China and emerging markets with Mylan’s significant presence in the US and Europe, allowing the new company to have a meaningfully expanded geographic reach for Viatris’ broad product portfolio and future pipeline.

Product diversity

In a recent interaction with BusinessLine, Mylan President Rajiv Malik had said that the transaction would diversify the product basket from generics to established brands, besides giving Mylan a strong foothold with Upjohn’s sales force into China, a fast growing healthcare economy. It would also give Mylan a critical mass in Korea, Brazil and Mexico, he added.

Responding to a question on whether the transformation into the new entity would involve a rationalisation of overlapping brands and employees, Malik said the rationalisation process had been under way in Mylan, given its acquisitions of established pharmaceuticals from Abbott (2015), Meda (2016) and Renaissance Acquisition holdings (2016). “We did not get time to sit down and rationalise. We started rationalisation last year,” he added, noting that a boutique consulting firm has been engaged to help navigate the course.

“We are 55 per cent in generics and 45 per cent branded OTC (over the counter drugs)... we are a consolidated company,” he had said.

Shareholders of Mylan are expected to vote on the proposed combination of Mylan and Upjohn in the coming months. The new name will be effective on closing of the transaction, expected to occur in mid-2020. The two companies will continue to operate as independent, separate organisations until then.

New entity Viatris
  • * Mylan-Upjohn combined entity looking at $ 20 billion revenues by 2020.
  • * Pfizer shareholders would own 57% of the combined new company, and Mylan shareholders would own 43%.
  • * The combined entity will have a global base in Hyderabad.
  • * Presently, Mylan India revenues stand at Rs 1000 crore.
  • * Has 19 manufacturing units across Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients, Oral Solid Dosage and Injectables
  • * Plans to invest $ 1 billion over next 5/6 years.
  • * Mylan partners with companies like Natco, Biocon, Gilead and Eisai, in India

Published on November 13, 2019
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