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Sun Pharma partners Mitsubishi Tanabe to sell 14 prescription brands in Japan

Livemint:  September 07, 2016

Hyderabad: Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, India’s largest drugmaker, on Tuesday said it has entered into a distribution agreement with Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corp. to market 14 prescription brands it acquired from Novartis AG in Japan this year.

“Under the alliance, following the transfer of manufacturing and marketing rights of Sun Pharma’s subsidiary in Japan, Mitsubishi will market and distribute all the 14 brands as well as provide information on their proper use to healthcare professionals,” Sun Pharma said in a statement.

Out of the 14 prescription brands, 11 will be re-launched by Sun Pharma-Mitsubishi in the Japanese market by the end of December, while the remaining three will hit the market next year.

“Through this alliance we have the opportunity to leverage Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corporation’s specialised expertise to create a strong business foundation for us in Japan,” said Isao Muramatsu, president and representative director, Sun Pharma Japan Ltd.

“Sun Pharma will focus on expanding its sales channels in Japan’s pharmaceutical market while continuing to ensure a stable supply of medicines and healthcare information,” Muramatsu said.

Sun Pharma forayed into the Japanese market in March by acquiring 14 prescription brands from Novartis for $293 million.

Till date, Lupin Ltd is the only Indian pharmaceuticals company to have a presence in the Japanese generics market, which currently accounts for 12% of its annual revenue. Lupin has made two acquisitions in Japan: Tokyo-based I’rom Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd in 2011 and Kyowa Pharmaceutical Industry Co. Ltd in 2007—and recently acquired 21 generic brands from Shionogi & Co. Ltd for $150 million.

An ageing population and mounting health costs have prompted the Japanese government to set a target of reaching 80% generic penetration by the end of the decade, bringing the domestic market under the radar of Indian pharmaceutical companies.

As per December 2015 data from IMS Health, the size of the Japanese pharmaceutical market was estimated at $73 billion, accounting for over 7% of the $1 trillion global pharmaceutical market, making it the second largest market for medicines after the US.

Shares of Sun Pharma rose 0.33% and were trading at Rs.784.65 at 10.17am on the BSE, while the benchmark Sensex index gained 0.97% to 28,807.96 points.

Disclaimer: This information has been collected through secondary research and IBEF is not responsible for any errors in the same.