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Blackstone snags Ayumi
Posted on Friday, 15 March 2019 14:27
Blackstone is acquiring anti-rheumatism and orthopaedic-focused Ayumi Pharmaceutical from Unison Capital and M3 for an undisclosed sum that Reuters reports could be worth in the ballpark of USD 1.00 billion.

At this estimation, the deal would be one of the top 25 largest private equity-backed buyouts of a Japanese company on record, according to Zephyr, the M&A database published by Bureau van Dijk.

Tokyo-headquartered Ayumi was established in 2015 through the integration of Santen Pharmaceutical’s anti-rheumatic drug business and Showa Yakuhin Kako’s medical division, including its analgesic portfolio.

Ayumi is billed as a frontrunning speciality pharmaceutical platform in Japan focused on the rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and orthopaedic therapeutic areas.

The company “has established itself as a leader in the rapidly growing Japanese biosimilar market, which is expected to be an important and growing treatment method that is both highly effective and economical for patients and the national health insurance system”.

Its flagship painkiller is Calonal and has a comprehensive portfolio of first-in-line treatments through synthetic and original drug equivalents which are prescribed to patients across all stages of RA diagnoses.

Blackstone’s acquisition, which it claims to be its first control private equity investment in Japan, comes after Bloomberg reported in December 2018 that Unison was exploring a potential sale of the drug maker.

At the time, the news provider noted the owner had hired JPMorgan to scout for potential buyers, such as buyout funds and healthcare companies.

Zephyr shows this acquisition - based on the USD 1.00 billion valuation – will be one of the top 25 largest deals on record targeting a Japanese company operating in the pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing sector.

At USD 7.90 billion, the current number one is taken by Yamanouchui’s purchase of Fuijisawa in 2005.

© Zephus Ltd