Mitsubishi Pharma, Tanabe Seiyaku Agree to Merge

February 8, 2007
Patricia Van Arnum
ePT--the Electronic Newsletter of Pharmaceutical Technology

Osaka, Japan (Feb. 2)-Tanabe Seiyaku Co. Ltd. and Mitsubishi Pharma Corporation agreed to merge, with the closing planned for merger scheduled to take effect Oct. 1, 2007.

Osaka, Japan (Feb. 2)-Tanabe Seiyaku Co. Ltd. (www.tanabe.co.jp/english) and Mitsubishi Pharma Corporation (www.m-pharma.co.jp) agreed to merge, with the closing planned for Oct. 1, 2007.

The companies reached a basic merger agreement this week and have set up a committee to work out the details by May. Board approval of the final agreement is scheduled for May, and a meeting for shareholders' approval is scheduled for late June.

Under the deal, Tanabe is acquiring Mitsubishi Pharma to form a new company, tentatively named Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corporation, as a consolidated subsidiary of Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Group. Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Group will hold a majority share of the new company.  

The combined company will have sales of 407.8 billion yen ($3.4 billion), making it the fifth largest pharmaceutical company in Japan. It will have domestic ethical pharmaceutical sales of 384.7 billion yen, ($3.2 billion).

“Tanabe Seiyaku and Mitsubishi Pharma share their goals to pursue business opportunities to respond to the changing medical environment while enhancing drug discovery capabilities and accelerating overseas business development,” said the companies in a prepared statement.

Part of that effort includes building a new business model by “making inroads into the generics business and by leveraging the diagnosis and testing platform of Mitsubishi Chemical Group (personalized medicines, etc.) with the aim of creating a distinctive pharmaceutical company,” said the companies. 

The merger follows recent consolidation in the Japanese pharmaceutical industry. In 2005, Sanyko and Daiichi Pharmaceuticals merged to form Daiichi Sanyko Co. Ltd. (Tokyo, www.daiichipharm.co.jp/english), and Fujisawa Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. and Yamanouchi Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. merged to form Astellas Pharma Inc. (Tokyo, www.astellas.com).