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Ranbaxy on Acquisition Path

Indian pharmaceutical giant Ranbaxy Laboratories went on an acquisition spree Thursday, acquiring the Romanian generic company Terapia for $324 million and a Belgian generic drugmaker, Ethimed NV, for an undisclosed amount.

Coming just three days after Ranbaxy’s acquisition of the Italian arm of Glaxo’s generic business, the two additional acquisitions show that Ranbaxy is fast-tracking its growth plans to access other high-growth markets globally.

Romania is scheduled to join the European Union on January 1, 2007 and is the fastest-growing pharmaceutical market in Central and Eastern Europe, with an approximate growth rate of 34 percent between 2002 and 2005.

Moreover, Terapia has a presence outside its native country, with 30 percent of its product portfolio registered in more than 15 countries, including the fast-growing generic markets of Russia, Ukraine, and Poland.

Ranbaxy’s latest acquisitions will give the company a platform to leverage its primary care presence across the European Union and the CIS markets, according to Peter Burema, president of Ranbaxy’s Europe, CIS, Africa, and Latin America operations.

Moving Up the Ranks

Ranbaxy is currently among the top 10 generic pharmaceutical companies in the world. The Gurgaon, India-based company intends to occupy a position in the top five generic drugmakers in the near future.

By acquiring Ethimed NV, which is ranked tenth among generic companies in Belgium, Ranbaxy hopes to manage operations in the Benelux territories.

The acquisition follows earlier similar strategic moves by the Indian drug giant in the larger European markets. The deal will allow Ranbaxy to anticipate local market dynamics and capitalize on the changing business landscape in the Benelux countries.

Belgium is the seventh-largest pharmaceutical market in Europe, while the Netherlands is the sixth-largest market, with a combined market size, including Luxembourg, of $7.6 billion.

The Belgian market is largely a branded, high-priced market with increasing generic penetration.
“The acquisition positions Ranbaxy favorably to capture a significant portion of this expanding market,” said Mr. Burema.

Source:  Red Herring

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