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Pharma/fine chemicals roundup—1 April 2014
6:32 AM MDT | April 1, 2014 | By DEEPTI RAMESH
China to better supervise drug safety
The Chinese government says it will establish a more rigorous supervision system this year, for food and drug safety. Harsh punishments would be handed out to those who violate food and drug safety laws, the government says. A police division dedicated to food and drug safety may also be established. The China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA; Beijing) worked closely with police authorities last year; more than 43,000 food and drug related criminal cases were cracked, and over 60,000 suspects arrested, the government says.
Asahi Kasei opens acetonitrile plant in South Korea
Asahi Kasei Chemicals (AKC), an Asahi Kasei subsidiary, on 27 March, officially opened a new acetonitrile plant at Ulsan, South Korea. The new, 11,000-m.t./year acetonitrile plant is located at the manufacturing site of Tongsuh Petrochemical (Ulsan), a wholly owned subsidiary of Asahi Kasei. AKC began construction of the acetonitrile plant in March 2012 and started up its operation in January 2014. Acetonitrile is mainly used as a solvent in the manufacture of active pharmaceutical ingredients and pharmaceutical intermediates; it is also used as an analytical reagent and in the field of pesticides, Asahi Kasei says. AKC supplies the global market with its 14,000-m.t./year acetonitrile plant at Kawasaki, Japan, and aimed to increase production capacity to meet demand in the pharmaceutical and analytical reagent fields, Asahi Kasei says. The start-up of the new plant provides AKC with a second production base for acetonitrile, enhancing its ability to assure reliable supply as Asia’s leading supplier and to meet growing demand for acetonitrile in line with the expanding pharmaceutical industry in India and other countries, Asahi Kasei says.
Bayer HealthCare invests €100 million to expand Beijing plant
Bayer HealthCare, a subgroup of Bayer, says it will invest about €100 million ($137.5 million) to significantly increase the production capacity of its plant at Beijing, China, in preparation for further demand of its products in the country. The planned capacity expansion is designed to ensure a reliable supply of products to meet the domestic demand for Bayer HealthCare’s products including the company’s cardiovascular and anti-diabetes products, Bayer HealthCare says. The expansion will include logistics areas for fully automated material handling, analytical laboratories, and high-speed packaging lines, Bayer HealthCare says.
MPA inspection completed at Cambrex API facility in Sweden
Cambrex (East Rutherford, NJ) says that the Medical Products Agency (MPA; Uppsala, Sweden) completed an inspection of Cambrex’s active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) manufacturing facility at Karlskoga, Sweden. The inspection found the site to be compliant with the principles and guidelines of GMP, and the site’s GMP certificate was renewed. The MPA authorities inspected the facility in September 2013. MPA is the Swedish national authority responsible for regulation and surveillance of the development, manufacturing, and sale of drugs and other medicinal products. The entire Karlskoga facility and the quality systems used for the manufacture and release of APIs were subject to a detailed compliance inspection, Cambrex says.
Aceto to acquire Pack Pharmaceuticals for $100 million
Aceto (Port Washington, NY) says that its wholly owned subsidiary Rising Pharmaceuticals (Allendale, NJ) has signed a definitive purchase agreement to acquire Pack Pharmaceuticals (Buffalo Grove, IL), a national marketer and distributor of generic prescription and OTC pharmaceutical products. The total transaction value is about $100 million, Aceto says. The purchase price includes an initial payment of about $80 million in cash and $5 million in Aceto stock. The agreement also provides for a three-year earn-out of up to $15 million in cash based on the achievement of certain performance-based targets, Aceto says. The transaction is expected to close in the second half of April, subject to customary closing conditions and the receipt of required regulatory approval. Aceto markets, sells, and distributes finished-dosage form generics and nutraceutical products, pharmaceutical intermediates and active pharmaceutical ingredients, and specialty chemicals and agricultural protection products.
Beyond IHS Chemical Week:
Lupin: Mexican buy a bridgehead to generics and API growth
Lupin has continued its investment in specialty segments by buying Mexican eye drugmaker Grin in a deal that also gives it a “bridgehead” to grow its API and generics business in the region.