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Piramal pays $635m for US data firm

Decision Resources Group purchase reflects increasing demand for drug market information

Piramal Healthcare, the India-based pharma commpany, is to acquire US healthcare research firm Decision Resources Group for $635m.

The purchase reflects Piramal's increasing ambition in the current uncertain climate to focus its drug discovery efforts based on the best available data.

“The global healthcare industry is facing several challenges, including rising research costs, lower drug approval rates, mounting regulatory pressures and increasingly complex reimbursement models,” said Piramal's chair Ajay Piramal.

“The need for specialist information is critical and the demand is growing.”

The acquisition will see Piramal take control of a company with nearly 300 analysts and projected revenues of $160m during 2012 for services such as web-enabled research, predictive analytics and consulting.

Decision Resources' work covers three segments of the pharma industry: analysis of drug utilisation and therapeutic areas to influence research efforts; support for market access, and the medical technology business.

The deal comes two years after Piramal sold its healthcare solutions business to Abbott Laboratories for $3.8bn, since when PIramal has said it “embarked on a strategy to acquire global growth businesses with sustainable returns”.

Decision Resources will remain as a standalone business headquartered in Burlington, Massachusetts, with the transaction expected to be completed by June 30, 2012.

Its current CEO Peter Hoenigsberg, who will continue to lead the company, emphasised the opportunities for Decision Resources to grow in regions it has limited operations in.

“My team and I are excited to be part of the Piramal Group and are confident that its expertise in acquiring, integrating and growing businesses will support our continued growth,” he said.

“Our customers have indicated that independent, objective, indispensable information from emerging markets is one of their greatest needs and Piramal's experience in emerging markets is important since these markets are the primary avenues for growth in the pharma industry.”

17th May 2012

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