Updated on 28 March 2014
In the last five years, Asian companies have been enthusiastic in reaching out to the western markets, given the increasing market for generic drugs as well as to build a strong R&D base in the region
Singapore: The Asia-Pacific (APAC) region attracted around 101 M&A deals in pharma, medical, and biotech industry in the first half of 2013, marking an increase of 29.5 percent from H1 2012 that closed on 78 deals, according to Mergermarket Pharma, Medical and Biotech Trend Report H1 2013. The total value of these 101 transactions stood at $6.6 billion.
With the slowdown in economy for the last three years, no deal has been able to touch the $2 billion size since 2011. The highest valued M&A deal in the first half of 2013 was the acquisition of India-based Strides Arcolab's Agila Specialties division by US-based Mylan penned at $1.75 billion. The next largest deal was the acquisition of Symbion, Australia's leading pharmaceutical wholesaler and distributor, by New Zealand-based EBOS Group for $886 million.
China and India retained the top two positions in APAC. While China attracted 39 M&A deals valued at $1.9 billion, India saw 15 deals amounting to $1.7 billion in value. China, however, faced a sharp decline in the value of deals from 2012 that had crossed $6 billion during the first half of the year itself and India managed to sustain the interest of investors in its pharma, medical, and biotech companies with rise in value by 28.6 percent from $1.4 billion in 2012.
Pharma attracts investors
The Asian market is more known for its strong presence in generics drugs than in drug discovery and research arena. This was evident from the interest of global companies eyeing the pharmaceutical companies in Asia than the biotech or research firms. Pharmaceutical targets dominated the Asian market among pharma, medtech, and biotech sector in H1 2013 as over 45 deals were done in this sector summing up to $3.8 billion. Mergermarket Report points out that the pharma sector accounted for 56.5 percent share by value and 44.6 percent share by volume. The number of deals targeting Asia- Pacific Pharmaceutical assets went up by 10 deals in H1 2013 compared to that in H1 2012 and aggregated to $4.5 billion from 35 deals.
The good news is that the biotech sector is now on the interest chart of investors as the investment in research driven companies touched $400 million from 13 deals in H1 2013 as opposed to $100 million from five deals in H1 2012.