AstraZeneca to buy Takeda's respiratory unit

Dec 16, 2015, 12:25 PM EST
Source: Brice Ambrosiak/flickr

AstraZeneca announced two Asia-related deal to boost its future prospects.

The Wall Street Journal reports:

AstraZeneca PLC on Wednesday announced two deals in two parts of the business it is targeting for growth, underlining the pace of activity at the drugmaker as it pursues a target of nearly doubling sales by 2023. The pharmaceuticals giant said it had agreed to pay $575 million to acquire the respiratory business of Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Separately, AstraZeneca said it would invest up to $100 million in Chinese biological-drug manufacturer WuXi AppTec for the option to acquire the company, and spend $50 million expanding its own manufacturing facilities in China.

Both deals strengthen areas in which AstraZeneca intends to grow. The company has spent the past few years intensifying its focus on its “growth platforms,” which include respiratory drugs and emerging markets. At the same time, it has sold or licensed out research programs that fall outside its core therapy areas of cancer, diabetes, respiratory and autoimmune disease, and cardiovascular medicine. China is one of AstraZeneca’s fastest-expanding markets despite an economic slowdown in the country that has tempered sales growth in the past year. Chief ExecutivePascal Soriot has said he expects the company to notch 10% to 20% growth in China this year, faster than the broader market, which is expanding at 7% to 8%.

Bloomberg writes:

The deal with Takeda will boost earnings starting next year, said Luke Miels, AstraZeneca’s executive vice president of global portfolio. AstraZeneca already markets roflumilast in the U.S. under the brand name Daliresp, and garnered $72 million in sales from the drug in the first nine months of the year. Takeda has pushed to make its operations more efficient, and last month disclosed plans for a partnership with Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. to sell generic drugs and certain off-patent medicines in Japan.