Roche buys Lonza's Singapore unit for $360 million

Global healthcare giant, Roche agreed to acquire the Singapore facility of Lonza, a manufacturer of pharmaceutical ingredients, for approximately $360 million.

Roche will effect the transaction through its wholly-owned subsidiary Genentech Singapore Pte. Ltd. (Genetech Singapore), by making an upfront payment of $290 million, and a subsequent $70 million payable based on certain milestones.

Genetech Singapore's vice president and general manager Jim Miller said: "We are very pleased to exercise our option to purchase from Lonza the biologic manufacturing facility that Lonza built and to combine it with our current production plant in Singapore.''

''As part of our globally integrated Genentech and Roche manufacturing network, this world-class operation in Singapore will play a major role in bringing important medicines to the patients who need them," Miller added.

Basel, Switzerland-based Lonza is a manufacturer of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) to the pharmaceutical industry. Its Singapore unit produces bulk drug substance for Genetech's Avastin, a breakthrough drug used to treat colon, rectal and lung cancer, which the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved in 2004.

Genentech Singapore is expected to receive FDA approval in 2010 to produce Lucentis injections, a prescription medicine for the treatment of patients with eye degeneration.