Japan’s Sawai to acquire US generics business Upsher-Smith Posted 19/05/2017

Sawai Pharmaceutical Company Ltd (Sawai) has signed an agreement to purchase the generics section of US firm Upsher-Smith in an attempt to enter the vast American pharmaceuticals market. 

Sawai is a leading Japanese generic drug manufacturer, based in Osaka. Like many Japanese firms, Sawai is focused on providing a stable supply of generics for the country. Due to an ageing population and the rising costs of medicines, the Japanese Government aims to increase the share of generics prescriptions. In August 2016, Sawai produced a business plan announcing its aim to maintain its strong position as a manufacturer of generic medicines and to help meet the government’s goal of reaching an 80% share of generics prescriptions by 2020. The business plan also described Sawai’s intention to target the US for expansion.

Upsher-Smith is a privately owned pharmaceutical company based in Minnesota, USA. The company has a product portfolio of over 30 pharmaceuticals, mainly oral solid preparations, as well as a 30 drug-strong pipeline.

Under the agreement signed on the 20 April 2017, Sawai will buy all equity interest in Upsher-Smith’s generics business from its parent company Acova, for the sum of US$1.05 billion. Upsher-Smith’s non-generic pharmaceutical activity however will remain under Acova.

The acquisition is expected to complete in June 2017, subject to regulatory approval, and will increase Sawai’s presence in the US market. The company say they aim to build a US business which combines their research and development capabilities with Upsher-Smith’s distribution network, commercial relationships and respected brand. Sawai’s President Mitsuo Sawai said they are delighted to sign the agreement with Upsher-Smith, who are also a family-owned generics firm.

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Source: Reuters

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