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Sawai wraps up acquisition of Upsher-Smith generics unit

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TOKYO and MINNEAPOLIS — Sawai Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. has closed its $1.05 billion acquisition of the Upsher-Smith Laboratories generic drug business.

Sawai, which unveiled the deal with Upsher-Smith parent Acova Inc. in April, plans to retain Upsher’s headquarters in Minnesota and operation in Colorado.

And as previously announced, Upsher-Smith will retain its current leadership, with president Rusty Field taking on the additional role of chief executive officer.

Rusty Field_Upsher-Smith

Rusty Field

The Japanese generic drug maker noted that the addition of Upsher-Smith’s generics unit — led by its extensive portfolio of established, high-value generic products — marks a major expansion of its presence in the U.S. market.

Sawai said it plans to build a U.S. business that leverages its intellectual property and combines R&D capabilities with Upsher’s manufacturing base, distribution network, commercial relationships and strong brand.

“This is a momentous day for both Sawai and Upsher-Smith,” stated Mitsuo Sawai, president of Sawai Pharmaceutical Co. “The acquisition of Upsher-Smith adds significantly to our capabilities and supports the acceleration of our vision of becoming a globally recognized generic drug company. Upsher-Smith’s manufacturing and commercial strength, strong distribution network and established relationships combined with Sawai’s research-and-development capabilities and state-of-the-art manufacturing technology provide the opportunity to further enhance our ability to bring high-quality, high-value generic pharmaceutical products to patients both in Japan and the United States.”

For Upsher-Smith, the acquisition brings access to Sawai’s state-of-the art manufacturing technology and opportunities to bring its medicines to such new markets as Japan.

“This acquisition brings together two closely aligned companies with similar values,” Field commented. “Sawai is one of the largest generic pharmaceutical companies in Japan, and Upsher-Smith has an established portfolio of generic products in the United States. This deal represents an energizing growth opportunity for the generics business both in the U.S. and abroad.”


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