Bora Pharmaceuticals expands into the US for the first time with Upsher-Smith acquisition

By Liza Laws

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images
© Getty Images

Related tags acquisition Mergers and acquisitions Bora Pharmaceuticals CDMO Manufacturing Contract manufacturing Generics

Bora Pharmaceuticals is set to acquire US pharma manufacturer Upsher-Smith Laboratories for up to $210 million, it says, to fuel global expansion.

Through this acquisition, Taiwan-based Bora not only gains additional capacity to support the generics manufacturer and CDMO business but also completes its capabilities to serve customers throughout the value chain, covering the entire US market. 

Bora’s board of directors announced its board of directors had approved the acquisition from shareholders Sawai Group Holdings Co., Ltd and Sumitomo Corporation of Americas on January 16.

Upsher-Smith, founded in 1919 and owned by Sawai since 2017, has a diversified portfolio of 48 generic products with manufacturing facilities in Plymouth and Maple Grove, Minnesota.

The companies say that Upsher-Smith is highly respected in the industry and is recognized as a reliable partner with solid manufacturing capabilities, a robust distribution network, and established commercial relationships. 

Combined, the two manufacturing facilities in Minnesota are capable of commercializing a broad range of dosage forms including oral solids, powders (both oral and topical), and liquid, as well as packaging.

Deep industry expertise

Bora says Upsher-Smith’s product portfolio also presents significant opportunities for its commercial Rx business, TWi, in the US. The manufacturer’s decades-long presence in the US generics market offers deep industry expertise and know-how, as well as a well-recognized and respected name. 

In addition to an immediate revenue stream from a diversified portfolio of generic and branded products, Upsher-Smith will also offer TWi enhanced product development and marketing capabilities so that it can continue to broaden its suite of products and grow its US commercial business. 

Bobby Sheng, chairman and CEO of Bora Group, said: “This is a significant milestone for Bora Group, marking the most critical expansion of Bora’s presence in the US market and significantly enhancing Bora’s position as a global competitor with regard to its CDMO business and commercial Rx business.

“Upsher-Smith’s competitiveness is a perfect match to Bora’s long-term growth – its newly-expanded, USFDA-approved manufacturing facilities, with a total capacity of 3.5 billion doses, will be Bora’s first local facility in the US, establishing a crucial stronghold for our global CDMO business.”

“Upsher-Smith’s platform for specialty generics will strengthen TWi’s advantage in the US commercial sale business with a complementary portfolio and differentiated distribution channels. We are confident, and also committed, to delivering another successful integration for accelerating Bora’s expansion and growth in the market.” 

Bora's expansion into the US

The closing of the transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals. Upon closing, Bora, via its wholly-owned subsidiary in the US, will acquire 100% equity interest of Upsher-Smith.

Bora says the acquisition marks its first in the US and that this signifies an expansion central to Bora’s presence in the US market and that it will create substantial opportunities for the company’s global CDMO business and commercial sales operations.

The acquisition provides Bora with its first local sites dedicated to its US-based and international CDMO customers.

Upsher-Smith said it has established an ‘attractive specialty generics business' in the US, introducing a complementary portfolio and sales channel to Bora’s commercial Rx business Twi. 

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