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Teva expands presence in South Korea with Handok deal

Will supply products for distribution in market worth $14bn

Teva South Korea

Teva Pharmaceutical has entered an agreement with Handok Pharmaceuticals to strengthen its business in the fast-growing healthcare market in South Korea.

The deal will see the generics company, which has its corporate headquarters in Israel, manufacture and supply its range of products, primarily consisting of generics and biosimilars, with South Korea-based Handok to handle sales and marketing, distribution and regulatory affairs in its home country.

The venture gives Teva a controlling stake, whereby it takes 51 per cent of profits, with Handok retaining the other 49 per cent.

Professor Itzhak Krinsky, chair of Teva Japan, chair of Teva South Korea and head of business development Asia Pacific, commented on what is the company's first alliance in East Asia.

He said: “By utilising Teva's broad portfolio, R&D capabilities and its global infrastructure and know-how coupled with Handok's expertise and strong reputation in Korea, Teva and Handok plan to assume a prominent position in the Korean pharmaceutical market.”

It's a market that is becoming an increasingly attractive proposition for pharma companies, with current estimates suggesting it is worth $14bn per year.

This is set to grow even more, with consistent double-digit growth for five years, while IMS Health has called South Korea the fastest-growing developed country.

The potential for generics in the country was also highlighted in a report by Frost & Sullivan, which said South Korea, along with China, Russia and Turkey, was still relatively untapped by generic-focused companies, such as Teva.

The country is attracting research interest too, with other companies looking set to increase their activities. This includes contract research organisation (CRO), INC Research, which recently launched a new office in the capital Seoul that will focus on study start-up and clinical operation activities.

According to Teva, its business venture with Handok is expected to commence activities in the next few months. Financial details of the agreement remain undisclosed.

18th December 2012

From: Sales

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