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Lupin buys US-based Symbiomix Therapeutics for $150 mn

Homegrown drugmaker Lupin Ltd has acquired US-based Symbiomix Therapeutics LLC for a cash consideration of $150 million (Rs 980 crore) as it seeks to expand its women’s healthcare portfolio.

The cash consideration includes an upfront payment of $50 million, besides other time-based payments. The acquisition was made through the company’s US unit, Lupin Inc, and was funded by internal accruals, the company said.

Symbiomix Therapeutics, which was founded in 2012, focusses on innovative therapies for gynaecologic infections that have serious health consequences. The company was backed by private equity firms OrbiMed, F-Prime Capital Partners and HBM Partners.

Early last month, Symbiomix’s lead product Solosec, which is used to treat bacterial vaginosis, had received the US Food and Drug Administration’s approval. It is the first and only single-dose oral treatment for the disease, which affects about 21 million American women in the age bracket of 14 to 49, annually.

Solosec, which is eligible for at least 10 years of exclusivity in the US, is expected to be commercially available by mid-2018, and will subsequently help expand Lupin’s branded women’s health specialty business, which is, at present, anchored by Methergine tablets.

“This transaction is an important milestone in the evolution of our specialty business and gives Lupin a new therapeutic to bring to obstetricians and gynecologists to treat a serious health condition they see frequently in their practices,” said Vinita Gupta, chief executive officer, Lupin.

The Indian drugmaker has been making big acquisitions in the US, the world’s largest pharmaceuticals market.

In 2015, it had struck the biggest overseas acquisition by an Indian pharmaceuticals company when it bought US-based GAVIS Pharmaceuticals LLC and Novel Laboratories Inc., or GAVIS, for $880 million.

In August 2016, Lupin had also agreed to purchase 21 branded drugs from Japan’s Shionogi & Co. Ltd for 15.4 billion yen (about $150 million) to expand in the world’s second-largest pharmaceuticals market.

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