Octoplus soon in Indian hands
23.10.2012 - Dutch pharma company Octoplus faces a daunting offer from Indian Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories. Most shareholders and both boards back the sale plan.
Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd from Hyderabad ties itself more strongly to Europe. Just this summer, Dr. Reddy’s launched the plan with German Merck from Darmstadt to co-develop a portfolio of biosimilar monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) in oncology. Now, the Indian API and generics producer is about to acquire the issued as well as the outstanding shares of Octoplus N.V. from Leiden. Dr. Reddy’s says it holds an irrevocable commitment from shareholders representing more than 50% of Octoplus shares. In addition, the Executive Board and Supervisory Board of the Dutch small pharma enterprise favour the transaction and urge the remaining shareholders to accept it. The offer is €27.39m in cash, representing all shares. This means a premium of 30% over the closing price of Octoplus’ end of day evaluation on 19 October 2012. OctoPlus’ identity and head office will be maintained. The intention of the partners is to enter into a business collaboration agreement for investigational formulation research.
Vice-Chairman and CEO of Dr. Reddy’s, G. V. Prasad, explains the rationale behind the offer: „As we globalise our R&D efforts, we are looking forward to build a research base in Leiden (Netherlands). The acquisition helps us ramp up our technology capabilities in drug delivery.“ Octoplus provides controlled release drug delivery technologies and cGMP manufacturing of the final product. With five new customers and three new projects with existing clients, the company increased revenues by 29% to €3.5m during the first half year of 2012 compared to €2.7m in H1/2011 .