Novartis subsidiary Sandoz has signed an agreement to buy Aspen Japan operations and related intellectual property from Aspen Global for an upfront payment of €300m ($331m) in cash.
The terms of the deal also include a partial consideration of approximately €100m, subject to supply conditions and licensing opportunities, following the closing of the acquisition.
Aspen Japan is a wholly owned unit of Aspen Global, part of Aspen Pharmacare. South Africa-based Aspen Group is the parent company of the Japanese entity.
The company’s portfolio in Japan consists of around 20 off-patent branded drugs, including anaesthetics, speciality and local brands.
For the fiscal year ending in 2019, the products yielded €130m in sales.
Sandoz expects the acquisition to support its footprint in Japan, considered as the third-largest market for generics globally. The deal will complement the company’s hospital generic and biosimilar products.
Sandoz CEO Richard Saynor said: “The acquisition of Aspen’s Japanese operations would significantly strengthen our position in this country, a stable but growing generics market.
“We are committed to helping address patient and customer needs in the market as we aspire to become the world’s leading and most valued generics company.”
For Aspen, the divestiture is meant to enable better focus on its core pharmaceutical business.
Aspen Group chief executive Stephen Saad said: “Although our Japanese-based operations do not provide appropriate scale and leverage in relation to this focus, the strong management team, dedicated staff, speciality portfolio and the commercial platform represent an excellent opportunity for Sandoz when combined with their Japanese portfolio and product pipeline.”
Furthermore, Aspen Global signed a five-year manufacturing and supply agreement with Sandoz to supply active pharmaceutical ingredients, semi-finished and finished products for drugs covered under the deal.
This agreement will be effective from the completion of the transaction, expected in the first half of next year.