Lupin US arm takes over Symbiomix Therapeutics


MUMBAI: Lupin on Wednesday said it has acquired Symbiomix Therapeutics, a US-based company specialising in drugs for gynaecologic infections, for cash considerations of $150 million, or about Rs 980 crore. The acquisition, made through the firm’s US subsidiary Lupin Pharmaceuticals, involves upfront payment of $50 million, other time-based payments, and sales-based contingent payments. Lupin said the acquisition is funded from internal funds. 

The deal gives it access to Symbiomix’s proprietary antibiotic drug Solosec for treatment of bacterial vaginosis, one of the most common vaginal infections that impacts nearly 21 million women in the US. “We are delighted to complete the acquisition of Symbiomix and its Solosec brand, which immediately expands Lupin’s US women’s health speciality business into the highly-complementary gynaecological infection sector,” said Vinita Gupta, CEO at Lupin. US Food and Drug Administrator (FDA) had last month approved Solosec (chemical name: secnidazole) oral granules, the first single-dose oral treatment for bacterial vaginosis. 

Gupta said it is difficult to give revenue guidance since the drug is not launched yet, but expects to hit six million prescriptions. 

Acquisition of Symbiomix and the Solosec franchise significantly expands Lupin’s branded women’s health specialty business, which is presently anchored by Methergine (methylergonovine) tablets, the company said. The deal comes at a time when the markets have expressed disappointment over Lupin's buyout of US drug maker Gavis for $750 million. 

The company is yet to reach the $200 million revenue guidance that it had forecasted. “We acknowledge that Gavis has taken much longer to generate the returns as it was anticipated,” Gupta told reporters over a conference call from the US. 

When asked by ETif Lupin will consider diversifying Gavin business, Gupta said the US firm’s controlled substance is seeing a ramp up and the company is on its way to $200-million mark. 

For Symbiomix acquisition, she said it beats the company's six year payback criteria. 

Lupin expects Solosec to be commercially available by mid-2018.