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Hospira acquisition might fetch Pfizer 3 plants in India

US pharmaceutical major Pfizer’s manufacturing capacity in India is set to get a boost, as it is likely to get three manufacturing facilities from Hospira in the country. This is part of Pfizer’s $ 17-billion acquisition of Hospira, announced on Thursday.

In India, Pfizer has largely depended on third-party manufacturers for domestic supplies. It has one facility in India (Goa), which it secured after acquiring Wyeth Ltd.

Emails sent to Pfizer, as well as Hospira, did not elicit responses at the time of going to press.

Hospira, through its subsidiary Hospira Healthcare India Pvt Ltd, has two facilities in India, acquired from Chennai-based Orchid Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals. It is setting up another in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh. The plant, which will manufacture speciality injectables, is being set up at a cost of $ 375-450 million.

Sources said these plants were vital for Hospira’s injectables business and would play a key role for Pfizer, too.

In December 2009, Hospira acquired the generic injectables business of Orchid Pharma, including the beta-lactam antibiotics manufacturing complex and research and development facility in Irungattukottai, near Chennai, along with its generic injectables product portfolio and pipeline, for about $ 400 million. In 2012, it had announced the acquisition of Orchid Pharma’s penicillin and penem active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) business and the API facility at Aurangabad, Maharashtra, along with associated research & development infrastructure in Chennai, through its Indian subsidiary, for about $ 200 million.

Hospira also has a joint venture with Cadila Healthcare Ltd, Zydus Hospira Oncology Pvt Ltd (ZHOPL). The venture began commercial manufacturing of injectable cytotoxic drugs in 2009. It produces docetaxel, which Hospira launched in the US and Australia in 2011. In 2013 and 2011, ZHOPL fetched Hospira $ 37.5 million and $ 40 million, respectively, the company said.

For Hospira’s expansion plans, the company’s India operations are important, primarily for supplies to the US, Europe and other regions.

The facility in Irungattukottai manufactures antibiotics, while the Visakhapatnam plant produces liquid injectables. The joint venture with Zydus Cadila is for producing oncology products.


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