British consumer goods firm, Reckitt Benckiser, has agreed to buy privately-held Indian company Paras Pharmaceuticals for about $726 million, to boost its operations in a fast-growing healthcare market. Paras, which clocked sales of more than Rs 400 crore in the financial year ended March, makes several over-the-counter medications such as Moov pain relief ointment, Krack heel care lotion, and D’Cold cold remedy.
Big global healthcare firms are fast driving into emerging markets as they look to tap into the healthcare needs of billions of new consumers in countries such as China, India, Brazil and Russia. “The research base of companies and the market potential in India are the main attractions for foreign players in the Indian healthcare sector. We will see these kind of deals in the future as well as global drug makers step up their efforts to capture a bigger share of the emerging markets,” says R.K Gupta, Managing Director, Taurus Asset Management Company, New Delhi.
Private equity firm Actis will sell its 63 percent stake in Paras to Reckitt Benckiser. Other shareholders including Sequoia Capital and Paras founder Girish Patel and his family will also sell their stakes to the British company. “It creates a material healthcare business in India, one of the most promising healthcare markets in the world with the addition of number of strong and leading brands”, says Bart Becht, CEO, Reckitt Benckiser.
Posted on: 17.12.2010