Sun Pharma to acquire cancer drug from Novartis for $175 mn
Reuters | Photo Credit: Reuters

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, India’s biggest drugmaker, plans to acquire skin cancer drug Odomzo from Swiss firm Novartis AG for an upfront payment of $175 million (Rs 1,190 crore).

The company will also make additional milestone payments as part of the proposed deal, it said in a stock-exchange filing on Thursday. It didn’t specify the quantum of these payments.

The deal is subject to anti-trust clearance and other closing conditions, the company said.

Odomzo was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in July 2015. It is a so-called hedgehog pathway inhibitor indicated for the treatment of adult patients with locally advanced basal cell carcinoma that has recurred following surgery or radiation therapy, or those who are not candidates for surgery or radiation therapy, Sun Pharma said.

“Odomzo gives us an opportunity to meaningfully expand our already established branded dermatology business and support our expansion into branded oncology with a launched brand,” said Kirti Ganorkar, global head of business development at Sun Pharma.

Sun Pharma, which counts Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC and state investment firm Temasek as investors, has made several acquisitions and entered new segments over the past months.

In October, Sun Pharma said it would acquire Swiss firm Ocular Technologies from private equity firm Auven Therapeutics to boost its ophthalmic pipeline. Sun Pharma agreed to pay Auven $40 million upfront, plus contingent development milestones and sales milestones as well as tiered royalty on sales of Ocular's eye disease treatment drug Seciera.

In March, Sun Pharma said it will acquire 14 prescription brands from Swiss firm Novartis in Japan for $293 million in a deal that would help the company to establish a strong footprint in the world’s second-largest pharmaceutical market. 

The drug maker announced its entry into the dermatology segment in June with the launch of its sunscreen product Suncros, as it sought to expand its over-the-counter business.

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