US drug firm Mylan to buy Indian firm for $1.6 bn

US generic drugs specialist Mylan said Thursday it would buy a unit of India's pharma firm Strides Arcolab for $1.6 billion, boosting its presence in the high-growth injectable drugs market.

The Pennsylvania-based Mylan said the all-cash buyout of Agila Specialities, which makes injectables, is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2013 subject to regulatory approvals.

"The addition of Agila to our existing platform will immediately create a new, powerful global leader in this fast-growing, attractive market segment," said Mylan chief executive Heather Bresch in a statement on the company's website.

"It will accelerate our target of becoming a top-three global player in injectables."

Strides' group chief executive Arun Kumar said in a statement the sale will "maximise value for its shareholders".

The sale of Bangalore-based Agila ends months of speculation. Top drug maker Pfizer and Japan's Otsuka Holdings were seen as potential buyers, according to media reports.

Mylan's chief financial officer John Sheehan said the deal would "immediately enhance revenue and earnings growth".

Mylan will have more than 700 marketed injectable products and a global pipeline of more than 350 injectable products pending the approval, its president Rajiv Malik said.

The global generic injectable drugs market is expected to grow at an annual rate of 13 percent between 2011 and 2017, driven by patent expiries, which will outpace most other dosage forms, the US firm said.

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