IHS Chemical Week


Pharma/fine chemicals roundup—6 May 2014

7:30 AM MDT | May 6, 2014 | By DEEPTI RAMESH

Cambrex reports huge fall in profits

Cambrex (East Rutherford, NJ) reports a 91.2% fall in net profits for the first quarter of 2014 compared with the year-ago period, to $982,000. First-quarter sales decreased 11.2%, to $66.2 million. “Due primarily to the timing of orders, sales of certain branded active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), generic APIs, and custom development products were lower during the quarter, partially offset by higher sales of controlled substances and products utilizing the company's drug delivery technology,” Cambrex says. “We increased the number of phase-three projects we are working on from 13 to 15 during the quarter, adding 3 new, late-stage projects with 1 prior late-stage product transitioning to commercial status,” says Steven Klosk, president and CEO of Cambrex. “While the timing of orders created a slow start to 2014, we expect strong growth in the second quarter to result in first-half growth in both sales and Ebitda compared to the first half of last year. Likewise, we continue to believe we are positioned to deliver growth consistent with our financial expectations for full-year 2014, similar to the increases we have delivered over the last three years. We are making significant growth investments in the business in the form of capital improvements and increased personnel within both the business development and R&D areas. Our increased R&D resources will allow us to add generic APIs to our current development portfolio of 15 products,” Klosk says.

Bayer to acquire consumer care business of Merck & Co. for $14.2 billion

Bayer announced today that it has agreed to acquire the consumer care business of pharmaceutical company Merck & Co. (Whitehouse Station, NJ), for a purchase price of $14.2 billion, in cash. Bayer, at the end of April, had declined to comment on a Reuters report about the possible acquisition. The acquisition will give Bayer the global number two position in non-prescription or over-the-counter, OTC products following recently announced consolidations in this highly attractive and growing healthcare industry segment, and will significantly enhance Bayer’s business across multiple therapeutic categories and geographies, Bayer says. Merck & Co.'s consumer care business includes leading brands such as Claritin, Coppertone and Dr. Scholl’s. Pro forma sales of the combined businesses in 2013 amounted to $7.4 billion with Merck & Co.’s business contributing about $2.2 billion, Bayer says. The transaction is subject to approval from the relevant antitrust authorities, with closing expected in the second half of 2014, Bayer says.

Study: Oral solid dosage form excipients market growing at 7.4%/year

The oral solid dosage form (OSDF) excipients market, which is valued at nearly $2.3 billion in the United States, Europe, India, and China, is growing sustainably on a global scale, according to recently published report by consulting and research firm Kline & Co. In the emerging Indian and Chinese markets, growth in consumption of excipients is driven by rising incomes and willingness to spend more on healthcare; key factors driving growth in major markets like the United States and Europe include the aging populations and high demand for pharmaceuticals, Kline says. “Due to this growing demand, the major markets will continue to flourish; however, it is worth noting that emerging markets will outpace major markets. Driven by the Indian and Chinese markets, the consumption of OSDF excipients is expected to grow at a healthy pace of 7.4%/year until 2018,” says Nikola Matic, industry manager at Kline’s chemicals & materials practice.

AstraZeneca board rejects Pfizer's sweetened proposal

AstraZeneca says that its board, on 2 May, rejected Pfizer’s proposal to combine the two firms. “The financial and other terms described in the proposal are inadequate, substantially undervalue AstraZeneca, and are not a basis on which to engage with Pfizer. The large proportion of the consideration payable in Pfizer shares and the tax-driven inversion structure remain unchanged,” AstraZeneca says in a statement. Pfizer, on 2 May, increased its offer for AstraZeneca and sent a letter to the prime minister of the United Kingdom, David Cameron, outlining plans for a combined company, should the offer be accepted.

Aceto completes acquisition of Pack Pharmaceuticals

Aceto (Port Washington, NY) says that its wholly owned subsidiary Rising Pharmaceuticals (Allendale, NJ) has completed the previously announced acquisition of Pack Pharmaceuticals (Buffalo Grove, IL), a national marketer and distributor of generic prescription and OTC pharmaceutical products, for about $100 million. Pack had sales of about $46 million in 2013. “The strategically important and complementary business combination of Pack with our Rising Pharmaceutical business further increases the mix of higher-margin, finished-dosage generic pharmaceuticals in Aceto's revenue base and doubles the size of our development pipeline of new generic products,” says Sal Guccione, CEO of Aceto. “In addition, the acquisition establishes Aceto in branded generics for the first time.”

Beyond IHS Chemical Week:

Swiss site for API maker Cerbios combines chemical and biological R&D
from in-PharmaTechnologist.com

Swiss high potency active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) contractor Cerbios has broken ground on a building that will bring together its chemical and biological R&D departments. The laboratories are being built in Lugano, southern Switzerland, Gabriel Haering, Cerbios CEO told in-PharmaTechnologist.com

GlaxoSmithKline to sell property in India, that housed API unit
from The Indian Express

GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals is looking to sell its 60-acre property in Thane district, India. Realty experts have pegged the value of the land in the range of Rs 1,600 to Rs 1,800 crore. In 2012, GlaxoSmithKline closed its factory located on the land that housed an active pharmaceutical ingredient manufacturing unit. The plant had been functional since 1961.

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