FDI in brownfield pharma stays, more power to FIPB

Jan 09 2014, 01:16 IST
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FDI up to 100 pct is allowed in new (greenfield) ventures through the automatic route. FDI up to 100 pct is allowed in new (greenfield) ventures through the automatic route.
Summary100% FDI helps, removing non-compete clause will hit M&A.

re-enter the same line of business for a substantial number of years or never in certain cases limiting competition for the buyer.

The industry needs non-discretionary and clear rules for investment. They (government) have granted discretionary powers to the FIPB which, for a fee, could be overridden, said DG Shah, general secretary, Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance.

However, Ranjana Smetacek, director general of the Organisation of Pharma Producers of India, which represent foreign drug makers said a case-by-case review of the non-compete clause would encourage future deals.

Shah added that the move could also remove the leverage that Indian companies had to negotiate premium valuations. Abbotts agreement to buy Piramal Healthcares domestic formulations business for $3.7 billion in 2010 prevents promoter Ajay Piramal from entering a similar business for eight years. Abbott had valued the Piramal unit at nine times annual sales.

Analysts say similar high-value deals in the pharma sector may take a beating due to the conditional use of non-compete clause. In 2008, Japans drug major Daiichi-Sankyo paid $4.9 billion for a majority stake in Ranbaxy, valuing the company at over five times its annual sales of 2007. Last year, Nasdaq-listed Mylan Inc valued Agila Specialties at $1.6 billion or about 6.2 times annual sales.

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