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Biocon and Neopharma signed an MOU to establish Neobiocon

Bangalore, July 30, 2007

Biocon and Neopharma signed an MOU to establish Neobiocon, a joint venture company in Dubai's biotechnology and research park, Dubiotech. The new venture expands Biocon's global network to provide affordable bio-therapeutics for unmet medical needs. Through this joint venture Neopharma takes a humble step towards the realization of the vision of the Father of the Nation, Late HH Sheikh Zayed Al Nahyan - 'Health for All'. On the anvil are specialty bio-pharmaceutical products for life threatening diseases.

Indian Biotechnology major, Biocon Limited and Abu Dhabi based pharmaceutical manufacturer Neopharma announced today the setting up of Neobiocon. Established at Dubai Biotechnology and Research Park (Dubiotech) in Dubai, this JV company will provide affordable life saving drugs to the people of the UAE. Neobiocon is a pioneering initiative that heralds the region's first foray to develop and market life saving biopharmaceutical niche products in key therapeutic areas such as oncology, diabetes, auto-immune disorders, cardiology, anti-obesity drugs and new generation immunosuppressant drugs.

Neobiocon will take initiatives to educate people on the debilitating effects of lifestyle diseases by rolling out educational campaigns through physician workshops. There will be a dual approach of local development coupled with educational programs/workshops that will benefit the local population. The Dubai Biotechnology and Research Park (Dubiotech) provides infrastructure to various companies to set up their own establishments apart from offering readymade offices for R and D, pilot production and storage facilities. Dubiotech helps bridge research, education and industry through national and international collaboration.

Speaking on the announcement, Ms. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, CMD, Biocon Limited said, "The establishment of Neobiocon takes our recently announced JV with Neopharma a step further. This in fact is a continuation of our tie-up. We are delighted to be able to provide the advantage of Biocon's proprietary biotech and other related biopharmaceutical pipeline products to the people in this region. Our long term vision is to ensure that the country is self-sufficient in terms of biopharmaceutical products." Dr. B R Shetty, MD and CEO, Neopharma remarked, "It gives us immense pleasure and great honour to join hands with biotech major, Biocon, and pioneer the introduction of world-class pharmaceutical biotech products, right here in the heart of the Emirates.

Ms.Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw has taken Biocon from an enzyme manufacturing company to a Biotech Powerhouse. Added Mr. Rakesh Bamzai, President, Marketing, Biocon Limited, "Neobiocon will be committed to developing a range of products for debilitating disease segments. Obesity, Diabetes, hypertension and high levels of cholesterol are interlinked and go hand-in-hand. Biocon's research addresses all these segments. Neobiocon will offer products that cater to lifestyle disorders and oncology.

We will also produce immunosuppressant drugs.
"Biotherapeutics for cardiovascular diabetes and oncology segments represent the fastest growing class of drugs in the $5 billion GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) pharmaceutical market. Studies have revealed high mortality rates due to diabetes and cardiovascular disorders in this region. Disease incidence is also alarmingly high. In addition to India and sub-Saharan Africa, the greatest relative increase of these diseases will occur in the Middle Eastern Countries. Obesity is also a common, serious and growing problem. Current epidemiological estimates suggest that 1.1 billion people worldwide are above their ideal weight. Developing obesity treatments that target novel pathways is a growing focus for biopharmaceutical companies.

The biotech product offerings include Biologicals, proprietary/In-licensed products, targeted therapeutics; research based differentiated formulations and innovative drug delivery system. NeoBiocon shall be targeting innovative products. Besides the UAE, the Dubai office will represent the company in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and Oman.

Neobiocon's product mix aims to cater to these categories of patients. Adds Dr. B R Shetty, "For the doctors and patients here, this would mean access to world class biopharmaceuticals at affordable prices". Neobiocon's platform emerges from a symbiotic partnership between the two companies. Biocon's knowledge base and cutting-edge technology and Neopharma's manufacturing prowess and local expertise will complement each other.

About Neopharma
Neopharma is Abu Dhabi's premier pharmaceutical manufacturing company. In less than 3 years, this world class facility has already introduced more than 70 formulations including antibiotics, pain killers, anti allergics and drugs in cardiology and diabetology segments. The company's ability to introduce new products in quick succession stems for a cohesive team work. A robust product research and development team, hi-tech manufacturing, quality embedded operations and skill regulatory support go hand in hand for one purpose - World class quality pharmaceuticals. The company's efforts are receiving valuable recognition. The company already ranks amongst the top 15 companies in UAE and is the proud recipient of the prestigious Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for the manufacturing category. Besides approval in the Ministry of Health, UAE and the GCC, Neopharma has received the Current European Union Good Manufacturing Practice Certificate from Belgium. All these reflect Neopharma's penchant for quality - a key driver for generic pharmaceutical products. A planned foray into European markets, work on nanotechnology based products and a joint venture with Biocon to herald the region's premier facility to develop life saving biotech and biopharmaceutical products are key agenda in the near future. Besides, the company facility is being recognised as a regional contract manufacturing hub for large companies such as Apotex, Canada and many European companies. Domestic market will continue to be in the limelight and Neopharma is poised to introduce several products to strengthen presence across more therapeutic categories.




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