AstraZeneca entered into an agreement to acquire Guangdong BeiKang Pharmaceutical, a privately owned generic-drug manufacturing company based in Guangdong province, China, for an undisclosed amount. Guangdong BeiKang Pharmaceutical’s portfolio includes injectable medicines used to treat infections. Upon completion of the acquisition, AstraZeneca will be responsible for the manufacture and commercialization of these medicines. The deal is contingent upon approval from the Ministry of Commerce in China and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2012.
AstraZeneca first established a presence in China in 1993 and has invested around $500 million in China since that time, according to a company press release. In October 2011, AstraZeneca invested $200 million in a new manufacturing facility located in the Jiangsu province that will produce intravenous and oral solid medicines for the company’s growing business in China. The acquisition of Guangdong BeiKang Pharmacuetical accelerates AstraZeneca’s strategy, which aims to increase the accessibility and affordability of medicines for wider patient populations that are currently underserved.
“AstraZeneca continues to invest in the key emerging markets such as China where the combination of growing populations, elevated levels of chronic diseases, and increasing income are driving demand and expectations for better healthcare treatment,” said Mark Mallon, president of AstraZeneca’s Asia-Pacific region, in the press release. “Our new acquisition further underscores our intention to serve the health needs of Chinese patients through our innovative medicines and, increasingly, high-quality branded generic treatments that are locally produced to global standards.”