Elder Pharma acquires UK-based OTC products company Max Healthcare

NutraHealth Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of drug major Elder Pharmaceuticals Ltd, has acquired UK-based Max Healthcare Ltd which has an OTC business and owns a range of marketing authorisations. Max Healthcare (the firm is not related to a subsidiary of Max India that is also known as Max Healthcare) also provides own label and branded OTC medicines and products to customers in the UK. max healhcare which is a subsidiary of max india.

According to an announcement made in the stock exchange, Elder Pharma believes this will help NutraHealth to re-enter the OTC pharmaceutical category and enhance its product range.

Max Healthcare will become a subsidiary of NutraHealth and will be managed along with Brunel Healthcare Manufacturing Ltd. UK-based Brunel Healthcare was acquired by NutraHealth from Perrigo in 2007. The company manufactures vitamins and minerals.

Max Healthcare has outsourced its operations and most of its manufacturing takes place in India. In the future, NutraHealth will explore opportunities for Elder Pharma to collaborate in the supply chain and explore vertical integration with Max Healthcare.

The announcement comes at a time when speculation is high that debt-laden Elder Pharma itself is on the block. The company founded in 1989 by first generation entrepreneur Jagdish Saxena has apparently mandated Ernst & Young (E&Y) and Japanese investment bank Nomura Securities to manage a formal process to find a buyer through a negotiated transaction, according to a report by Economic Times.

Elder Pharma has accumulated debt of Rs 1,300 crore after expanding its operations through acquisitions. Pharma MNCs such as GlaxoSmithKline, Sanofi and Pfizer are believed to be among the players which have evinced interest.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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