Teva grabs Peruvian generics maker in Latin American push

Eyeing growth in Latin America, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries snapped up the Peruvian drugmaker Corporación Infarmasa. A manufacturer of branded and unbranded generics, Infarmasa boasts more than 500 marketed products, including the leading brand of antibiotics in Peru, Teva said. Other Infarmasa drugs include antihistamines, corticosteroids and pain relievers.

The Infarmasa buy--which Citi estimates at $250 million to $300 million--will give Teva a major platform in Peru; it will instantly become the second-largest drugmaker in the country when Infarmasa combines with its existing operations there. But it's also a sign of Teva's focus on growth in the region. The deal "expands our activity in Latin America, and highlights our growth strategy for the coming years," CEO Shlomo Yanai said in a statement. "Infarmasa complements Teva's activity in Perú and will advance our position as a market leader in this region."

As Citi points out in an investor note, Teva restructured last year to put the Americas into a single division under the leadership of regional CEO Bill Marth. The move emphasizes that Teva is committed to South America, Citi figures. "We expect Teva to remain focused on growth in Latin America and believe additional deals are in the pipeline," the investment firm said. "We expect Mr. Marth to selectively acquire assets [there]."

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