labels: elder pharmaceuticals, pharmaceuticals, glenmark pharmaceuticals, m&a, ajanta pharma
Elder, Ajanta, Glenmark may buy known therapeutic brands news
Nisha Das
11 April 2003
Mumbai: Medium-sized pharmaceutical companies such as Elder Pharmaceuticals, Ajanta Pharma and Glenmark are exploring possibilities of acquiring well-known brands to increase their portfolio in therapeutic segments. These companies have already asked various merchant bankers to scout for brands that would meet this strategy.

Says Elder Pharmaceuticals director (international division) Alok Saxsena: "We are in the process of expanding our therapeutic portfolio into new segments like central nerve system and anti-diabetic. Besides the process patent route, we are also planning to go for the inorganic route. Merchant bankers are approaching us with many proposals. But, no deal has been finalised yet."

Says Ajanta Pharma CEO Aravind K Agarwal: "We are looking for brands that can provide a continuous bottomline growth to the company. Though our merchant bankers had come up with two-three brands, we could not acquire them due to the high valuation quoted for these brands. The process is still on."

Ajanta Pharma has identified five main therapeutic segments like neutraceuticals, opthamology, cardiovascular, anti-diabetic and pain management as focus areas for growth and has decided to acquire some fast-moving brands from these segments. The company has asked ICCI Securities, SBI Caps and KPMG to scout for brands in the same segments.

Says Glenmark Pharmaceuticals executive director Glenn Saldanha: "Our brand acquisition will depend on the valuation of the brand. It should suit our portfolio, too. But we do not have any immediate plans to go for brand acquisition as we are now concentrating on US expansion." But sources close to the company say Glenmark is actively scouting for brands in the cardiovascular segment.

Glenmark had acquired three brands — Alex (for dry cough), Flucort (a topical steroid) and Sensur (an ointment to treat pain) — from Mumbai-based Lyka Laboratories for Rs 34.25 crore in 2000. The acquisition was entirely funded via a term-loan from ICICI.

Industry analysts say due to the high valuations quoted by the seller companies for their brands, no big deals are taking place in the brand acquisition market. "Some of the pharma companies that had put their brands for sale around two years back have dropped their plans because of the high valuation quoted by them."


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Elder, Ajanta, Glenmark may buy known therapeutic brands