SA drugmaker acquires anaesthetics portfolio from GSK

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Aspen Pharmacare has agreed to buy a portfolio of anaesthetic medicines from GlaxoSmithKline for as much as £280m as Africa’s biggest maker of generic drugs continues a spending spree.

According to a Business Day report, the South African-based drugmaker said the company will pay an initial £180m to Glaxo and disburse as much as £100m if certain goals are met. The deal adds to the anaesthetics Aspen bought in June from AstraZeneca of the UK, for as much as $770m.

"Aspen has identified anaesthetics as a key element of its expansion strategy," the company said. "The addition of the portfolio will serve to further establish Aspen as a major role player in anaesthetics globally."

The report says the deal is the second since Aspen said in June it had secured €3bn in funding, attracting support from 27 banks. The acquisitive company has spent more than $2bn on assets from drugmakers including Glaxo and Merck in recent years to boost its portfolio of medicines and manufacturing sites, and now sells medicines in more than 150 countries.

The report says Aspen will also buy rights from Glaxo to sell two drugs in additional countries, including China, for £45m pounds. Aspen had previously bought the rights to sell the medicines, Fraxiparine and Arixtra, in other markets. The two companies agreed to cancel a partnership in sub-Saharan Africa, for which Aspen will receive £45m from the London-based company, the report says.

Business Day report

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