Boosting revenues – acquisition of a UK pharma plant


Pharma major Nicholas Piramal India has struck s deal to acquire one of Pfizer’s plants in Britain for an undisclosed amount. The transaction, which makes NPIL, the largest contract manufacturer of Pfizer, is expected to be completed by mid 2006 or earlier. It is also expected to boost revenues by $350 million over the next five years.

The deal includes a supply agreement with Pfizer, which will continue to buy drugs from the plant, in Morpeth in north-eastern England, until 2011. Nicholas Piramal’s UK unit NPIL Pharmaceuticals (UK), will acquire the facility on an asset purchase basis.

The acquisition will be funded through internal accruals. The announcement lifted Nicholas Piramal shares nearly 8% higher indicating approval of share holders and dealers of the stock market.

The Morpeth site is one of Pfizer’s integrated facilities. It houses end-to-end production and supply chain capabilities that cover APIs, finished dosage, packaging and distribution. Pfizer’s websites states that, the plant, set up in the 1960s, manufactures drugs for pain control, arthritis and ulcer prevention. As the facility has USFDA and UK MHRA approvals along with a packaging division, it will help the company to sell products in 106 countries.

The deal will make Nicholas Piramal the biggest supplier within Pfizer’s global contract manufacturing network. The deal will also help Nicholas emerge as one of the world’s top ten pharmaceutical outsourcing companies with custom manufacturing revenue exceeding $200 million a year.

The company expects the revenues to be around half a billion for the current fiscal, after the deal. Contract manufacturing segment will also contribute 50% to our revenues much ahead of expectations.

The Morpeth deal is the third acquisition for Nicholas Piramal in UK. Earlier, the company had acquired the inhalation anaesthetics business of the Rhodia group in 2004 and last December, it bought Avecia Pharmaceuticals.

This is the second deal between NPIL, and Pfizer. The companies earlier signed a seven-year contract manufacturing agreement under which Nicholas Piramal will carry out research and development work for Pfizer and provide services for its animal health division.

The Morpeth facility, employing 450 people, is a supply hub for certain Pfizer products to the US, Europe and Japan. Nicholas Morpeth will play a key role in the company’s global contract manufacturing network.

Pfizer to introduce 20 new drugs.Buoyed by India’s new patent regime, global pharmaceutical giant Pfizer is set to launch a host of new drugs, including diabetes drug Exubera, which provides users the option to inhale powder instead of consuming pills or injecting insulin. They intend to launch 20 new products over the next three-five years in India and China and 10 new products in Japan over the next three years. Pfizer chairman and chief executive gave the details on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum meeting.

Exubera is another instance of an international pharma major launching a new medicine in India along with a global launch. The anti-diabetes medicine is scheduled to hit US stores in about a month’s time.

Pfizer has tied up with Nektar Therapeutics for Exubera’s US launch. International players have launched at least half a dozen patented medicines in India in as many months along with their entry into other prominent mark.

Nicholas Piramal India acquired a Pfizer plant in UK and the deal is aimed at boosting the Company’s (Nicholas) revenues by $350 Million over the next five Years. This is another acquisition in the global arena to increase the revenues substantially and adding new state of the art products (medicines in this case) to sell in more than 100 countries.