PuraCap snags second new production site in a week

Epic Pharma--Courtesy of PuraCap

Generics maker and CMO PuraCap has struck again. Just a week after expanding its manufacturing reach by snagging a 145,000-square-foot production facility in Puerto Rico, it has acquired a plant in New York that once belonged to Sandoz.

PuraCap and its Shanghai-based parent Humanwell Healthcare are getting the 110,000-square-foot generics manufacturing facility in Queens, NY, as part of a $550 million deal to buy Epic Pharma. The plant is FDA- and DEA-approved to manufacture controlled drug substances and powder formulations. South Plainfield, NJ-based PuraCap also gets Epic's 15 approved products and a pipeline of 37 more along with Epic's 215 employees. Epic Pharma was created in 2008 when it acquired the plant in the Laurelton neighborhood of Queens that Sandoz was shutting down.

The Epic deal came a week after PuraCap's March 23 announcement that it was buying Blu Pharmaceuticals, a small, minority-owned, generic pharmaceutical company based in Franklin, KY. As part of that deal, PuraCap got Blu's 145,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in Dorado, Puerto Rico, as well as an 185,000-square-foot warehouse and distribution center in Franklin. Terms of that deal were not announced.

"(T)his acquisition along with our recent acquisition of Blu Pharmaceutical LLC & Blu Carib Inc., firmly establishes Humanwell and PuraCap in the U.S. generic Rx pharmaceutical segment," PuraCap CEO Dahai Guo said in the announcement. "The PuraCap U.S. footprint continues to expand our tablet, softgel, two-piece capsules, cream, and powder product portfolio."

The market is hot right now for small generics manufacturers in the U.S. Deals include one announced in December by Morristown, NJ-based Capsugel to buy Xcelience, a specialized contract development and manufacturing organization based in Tampa, FL, as well as Powdersize, a Quakertown, PA-based contract manufacturer with expertise in particle size reduction. India's Cipla got its first U.S. manufacturing facility, a 350,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in Long Island, NY, with its $550 acquisition of InvaGen Pharmaceuticals, a Hauppauge, NY-based generics maker.

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