Pfizer, the world's largest research-based pharmaceutical company, and Zhejiang Hisun Pharmaceuticals, a Chinese pharmaceutical company, have launched their joint venture Hisun-Pfizer Pharmaceuticals, to develop, manufacture and commercialize off-patent pharmaceutical products in China and global markets.
The creation of the joint venture marks an important milestone in strengthening the ability of both companies to reach more patients with high-quality and low-cost medicines in the branded generics arena. In China, branded generics account for 70% of the domestic pharmaceutical market.
Hisun-Pfizer will take advantage of Hisun's product portfolio, broad market outreach and experience with the production and commercialization of branded generic medicines. The joint venture will also benefit from Pfizer's R&D, manufacturing quality management, international market promotion and operational capabilities. It will focus on R&D and the production and commercialization of high-quality branded generic medicines, and the broader commercialization of existing medicines through a local and global sales and marketing infrastructure. The venture will be operated in accordance with international quality standards to advance both companies' mission of bringing high-quality and affordable medicines to address the medical needs of patients in China and worldwide.
This also marks one of the first joint ventures between a multinational pharmaceutical company and a local pharmaceutical company in branded generic medicines in China, and is also one of the largest pharmaceutical joint venture projects in Zhejiang province.
Bai Hua, chairman and president of Hisun, expressed that establishing this joint venture with a leading global pharmaceutical company is an important step towards achieving Hisun's long-term vision of "becoming a widely respected international pharmaceutical company" by "persisting in pharmaceutical innovation for the benefit of human beings." The partnership also paves the way for Hisun to transition from being an active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) manufacturer to an established branded generics company.
"The joint venture will provide our patients with high-quality and low-cost branded generic medicines through our internationally compatible management systems and R&D and production technology,” said Hua. “This will help us better contribute to the development of the Chinese pharmaceutical industry, advance the drug innovation and manufacturing capabilities of Zhejiang province and China, and lay a solid foundation for Chinese pharmaceutical companies to enter the international market.”
Hisun and Pfizer first signed the Memorandum of Understanding to establish the joint venture during the Zhejiang Provincial Government Delegation's visit to the U.S. in June 2011. In February 2012, during the visit of Xi Jinping, vice president of China, to the U.S., the two companies signed the Framework Agreement.
Hisun-Pfizer has an aggregate investment of $295 million and a registered capital of $250 million. Hisun holds 51% of the share and Pfizer holds 49%. The registration facilities and production plants of the joint venture will be located in Fuyang, Zhejiang province, while the management center and R&D center will be located in Shanghai and Hangzhou, respectively.
The parties will contribute select existing products to the joint venture, which will have a broad portfolio covering cardiovascular disease, infectious disease, oncology, mental health and other therapeutic areas. They will also contribute manufacturing sites, cash and other relevant assets. The joint venture aims to build a robust sales network that covers most areas and hospitals in China and to enter the international market by leveraging on Pfizer's global business networks.
"We are confident that our joint venture will allow both companies to build upon existing core capabilities and our respective areas of expertise to address the needs of more patients than ever before," said Olivier Brandicourt, president and general manager, emerging markets and established products business units, Pfizer. "This partnership further supports the government of China's goals for improved access to medicines and treatments for the patients of China."