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Ahmedabad-headquartered injectables player Claris Lifesciences has completed the sale of its remaining 20 per cent stake in Otsuka Pharmaceutical India Private Limited (OPIPL), the joint venture with Otsuka Pharmaceutical Factory and Mitsui & Co, to Otsuka for Rs 130 crore ($20 million).
Otsuka held 60 per cent in the joint venture, while Mitsui held 20 per cent and the remaining 20 per cent was with Claris. Claris Board had approved the decision in May this year to divest its entire stake in OPIPL.
The business was valued at Rs 1,313 crore at that time, and Claris had received total cash consideration of Rs 1,050-crore over multiple agreements.
Claris had transferred the common solutions, anti-infectives, plasma volume expanders and parenteral nutrition therapies of Claris for India and the emerging markets to the Claris-Otsuka joint venture.
Analysts feel that this is a long-term strategic decision for the company. It now has a portion of its emerging markets business, which it might look at selling as well.
Industry insiders feel that having sold its speciality injectables business to Baxter in December 2016, and now divesting its stake in the Otsuka joint venture, Claris would be looking at exiting the pharma business altogether.
In an earlier interview with Business Standard, Arjun Handa, the executive vice chairman and group managing director of Claris Lifesciences, had indicated that he was interested in diversifying to some consumer business space, like fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG), and work on that could start in the second-half of 2017.
In December 2016, Claris had entered into a definitive agreement with US-based Baxter International to sell its wholly-owned subsidiary Claris Injectables for approximately $625 million (Rs 4,237 crore). The company is now working to close the deal.