The board of Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has approved the spinoff of its innovation business into a new company in the US. Setting up of the new company will provide an enhanced focus to the innovation business and help accelerate the pipeline towards commercialisation, the pharma company said in a filing to exchanges on Thursday.

Glenmark said that the new company, which will be a wholly‐owned subsidiary and based in the US, will have over 400 employees as part of the business. The current specialty and generics business will not be part of this new company. The transfer of the assets and employees to the new innovation company is expected to be completed in the next six to nine months.

All innovative molecules in the pipeline - including preclinical assets and technology, research and development (R&D) centres in Switzerland, an R&D centre at Paramus in the US, an R&D centre at Navi Mumbai related to the innovation business, and the biologics manufacturing facility in Switzerland along with all employees associated with innovative R&D - will be part of the new company, Glenmark said.

Glenmark’s current innovation pipeline consists of eight assets, including new chemical entities (NCEs) and new biological entities (NBEs), in various stages of development in the areas of immunology, oncology and pain management.

“With the pipeline at an advanced stage, we believe it’s the right time for the innovation business to be an independent entity and charter its own journey towards becoming a leading biotech organization globally. This change will provide enhanced focus to the business, a better operating ecosystem and additional opportunities to unlock value for the parent company in future," said Glenn Saldanha, chairman and managing director of Glenmark Pharmaceuticals.

The drugmaker also announced its third quarter earnings on Thursday. Net profit rose 11% to 116.34 crore for the December 2018 quarter, mainly on account of robust sales in India, the US and Europe. The company's consolidated revenue stood at 2,555.04 crore during the October-December 2018 period from 2,203.66 crore in the year-ago period.

In noon trade today, Glenmark Pharma shares were trading 8.5% lower at 556 as compared to a 1% decline in Nifty.

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