Mumbai: Mid-sized drugmaker Venus Remedies is in talks with various firms in the US and Europe to out-license four patent drugs over the next 2-3 years, its top official said.
“We have short-listed a few companies in Europe, while talks are on with a few in the US as we look to launch our four patented drugs by 2014,” Pawan Chaudhary, chairman and managing director, told Reuters late on Wednesday.
The Haryana-based drugmaker obtained a US patent for ‘Vancoplus’, a drug to treat hospital acquired staph infections (MRSA), which has an estimated market size of $5 billion in the US, it said in a statement on Wednesday.
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or MRSA infection is caused by a strain of staph bacteria that become resistant to the antibiotics commonly used to treat staph infections.
“MRSA is a growing concern in the US and the market for (MRSA) treatment is expect to reach $9 billion in another five years,” he said.
The company expects ‘Vancoplus’ to capture at least 5% market share in the U.S. in three years after its proposed launch in early 2014.
“The sales are growing fast in India and we expect 50% year-on-year growth from present sales of $4 million.”
Venus also wants to out-license its anti-infectant ‘Sulbactomax’, pneumonia drug ‘Potentox´ and one-a-day pain killer ‘Achnil’.
“We see substantial one-time licensing fees coming from all the four drugs by 2014, post which, our company will see a complete turn around.”
The drugs would also generate significant royalty from partners on large volumes, he added.
Last year, Venus had said, it expected Sulbactomax to capture 10% market share in Europe by 2015 with yearly sales reaching €25-30 million.
Exports, licensing fess to push growth
Venus Remedies, which ships drugs to South East Asia, Africa, Latin America, Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries and Europe, sees exports rising 25-30% every year once it completes out-licensing of its patented products.
“As of now, our exports are rising about 15 percent on year, but once the patented products are commercialised in Europe and US, the numbers would zoom,” Chaudhary said.
Venus has in-licensed an antibiotic ‘Emiticin’ from China’s Fanguyan Pharma, which it plans to launch in India by end-2011.
It has also received approval from Drugs Controller General of India to start phase-III trials for breast cancer detection drug ‘Tumatrek’.
“Emiticin is a toxicity-reducing drug while Tumatrek is an injection that detects breast cancer at a nascent stage,” Manu Chaudhary, joint managing director, said.
Venus expects Emiticin to generate sales worth Rs 4.5 crore in first 12 months of launch, while Tumatrek would be commercialised in 11 Asian countries including India, she said.
The drugmaker, which gets about 35% of sales from India, reported a net profit of Rs 13.62 crore on net sales of Rs 98.87 crore for June quarter.
At 10:47 a.m., shares of Venus Remedies, valued at Rs 220 crore, were trading at 243.90 rupees, up 1.01% in a Mumbai market that was up 0.14%.