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Mankind Pharma Eyes Acquisition Of Biotech Firms Plans New Launches

Mankind Pharma is actively looking for buyouts in the biotechnology space after talks with Bharat Serums and Vaccines fell through. The company feels that a manufacturing site would be crucial for its biotechnology business and is open to inorganic acquisition in this space.

“For the biotechnology segment we are open to inorganic growth. We are looking to acquire a suitable target that would bring in brands as well as manufacturing sites. We plan to launch biotech products in the infertility segment. We were in talks with Bharat Serums, but the talks fell through,” said RC Juneja, founder and chairman of Mankind Pharma.

Juneja also said that if they fail to find a good value deal, the company would focus on internal R&D and will set up its own plant. At present, it has 21 manufacturing sites. The Paonta Sahib plant in Himachal Pradesh got approval from the US drug regulator in February and is now preparing test batches for the US market.

In the biosimilars space too, the company is developing products in the rheumatology segment. Its R&D team is also working on novel chemical entities (NCEs) or new drugs in diabetes therapy.

The acute therapy focussed company has recently shifted its focus to chronic therapy areas like diabetes and cardiac ailments. It is also driving five per cent of its turnover towards research and development (R&D). Bulk of the R&D cost is towards biosimilars.

Meanwhile, Mankind became the first Indian and second global company to develop a dydrogesterone containing drug for treatment of pregnancy-related complications. Dydogesterone has a similar molecular structure to the natural hormone Progesterone.

Juneja claimed that the market size of the drug in India, where Abbott has a monopoly, is about Rs 400 crore. The company is targeting Rs 50-crore sales in 2020-21 as it has priced its drug 25 per cent cheaper than the Abbott drug, which roughly costs Rs 60 per dose. “We can also target the Rs 700-crore natural progesterone products market,” Juneja said.

Mankind has started focussing on the chronic segment in the last few years and it now contributes 30 per cent of the company’s turnover and has clocked a 23 per cent compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) as against a 5 per cent CAGR in the acute segment. Its marquee brands like PregaNews, Unwanted-72, Gas-o-fast are in the over the counter (OTC) category.

The OTC segment’s contribution, however, has remained at around 10 per cent of the turnover in the last few years and Juneja said that they do not plan to launch me-too products in this area. “We have very good products here, like PregaNews where we enjoy a 90 per cent market share,” he said.-Business Standard

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