Wockhardt is looking for partners in overseas market for new products

Wockhardt sees huge opportunity in off-patent medicines over the next few years

Troubled pharma player Wockhardt said it sees huge opportunity in off-patent medicines over the next few years. "The US remains the world's largest pharmaceuticals market currently, valued at over $300 billion. Over the next few years, patents on several blockbusters will expire and sale of over $140 billion are expected to face generic competition in the major developed markets.

"The US carves out almost two-thirds of this value and provides huge opportunity for off-patent medicines," Wockhardt Chairman Habil Khorakiwala told shareholders at the company's annual general meeting (AGM).

He said investment in R&D and abbreviated new drug applications (ANDA) filing will give the company unique advantage in the US market. The leading Indian drugmaker had invested Rs150 crore in R&D in FY11.

Wockhardt's 40-50 products in the US and Europe are expected to be approved in the next 18 months and many more products are under development and awaiting filing in the coming years, Khorakiwala said.

The company had filed additional 150 global patent applications last year alone. The cash-strapped firm is seeking alliances with partners in overseas market for its new products. The company's European operations retained market share and improved profitability despite a tough environment, the Chairman said.

Commenting on the domestic market, Khorakiwala said, "We have introduced 43 products and also increased our coverage to customers significantly during the year, including semi-urban and rural markets. We are energising our domestic operations for achieving faster growth by covering newer therapeutic segments and a combination of specialists and extensive coverage of general physicians."

Khorakiwala further said the company has divested its nutrition business for Rs1,280 crore last year, which will be used to reduce a significant part of debt. Following this, in the current fiscal, the company expects to bring substantially down its debt to equity ratio to 2:1 from the current 2.8:1.

He declined to comment on a winding-up petition filed against the company by its foreign currency convertible bond (FCCB) holders, saying the matter is sub-judice.

The sale of Wockhardt's nutrition business to French food giant Danone got stuck at the Bombay High Court last week after the secured and unsecured lenders failed to arrive at a conclusion on how the money from the deal will be distributed. The court will hear the case again on 21st September.

On Tuesday, Wockhardt ended 0.74% up at Rs387.30 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex declined 0.21% to 16,467.44.


Prakash Constrowell plans to raise Rs60 crore via IPO

Prakash Constrowell proposes to utilise the net proceeds of the IPO to meet working capital requirement and investment in subsidiaries

Prakash Constrowell, a company predominantly engaged in infrastructure development and civil construction business, proposes to enter the capital markets with a public issue of equity shares to raise Rs60 crore through 100% book building process.

The issue opens on 19th September and closes on 21st September. The construction company is expected to announce the price band and minimum bid lot prior to the issue opening date, Prakash Constrowell's director, Prakash Laddha said.

The Nasik-based company proposes to utilise the net proceeds of the issue to meet working capital requirement, investment in construction equipments and investment in subsidiaries, Laddha said.

The company operates in the three segments of construction namely infrastructure development, civil construction and residential and commercial real estate construction.

As of 30 June 2011, its order book, was Rs150.81 crore and is spread across the construction sectors in which it operates, Laddha said. The company has successfully completed number of projects awarded by government and semi-government bodies, build, operate & transfer (BOT) project by way of public-private partnership (PPP) model.

The company's income from operations on a consolidated basis as per the restated financials has grown from Rs26.40 crore in the year 2007-08 to Rs126.91 crore in the year 2010-11, registering a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 68.77% over the period of past four financial years. Its profit after tax on a consolidated basis has grown from Rs3.06 crore in the year 2007-08 to Rs10.65 crore in the year 2010-11, a CAGR of 51.47%.

Intensive Fiscal Services Pvt Ltd is the sole Book Running Lead Manager to the issue. The equity shares of the company are proposed to be listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and National Stock Exchange (NSE).


IDRBT & ISACA sign MoU for benefit of Indian banking

ISACA is an international body, working in the fields of information systems control, audit, security and governance

The Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology (IDRBT), a banking technology institute established by the Reserve Bank of India, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with ISACA (formerly the Information Systems Audit and Control Association) for joint activities in IT governance, information systems audit, information security and information systems risk management.

ISACA is an international body, working in the fields of information systems control, audit, security and governance. The MoU was signed by B Sambamurthy, director, IDRBT, and Ken Vander Wal, ISACA International President.

Sambamurthy said on this occasion that "Information is a key operating and strategic asset for banks. Effective management of information is a key critical success factor. On one hand, banks have to ensure privacy of customer information. On the other, decision making needs to be information-led. Banks need to adopt international standards and best practises. The MoU will help in disseminating standards, best practises and frameworks."

"ISACA and its nearly 6,000 members in India are committed to helping organisations strengthen their governance of enterprise IT," said Vander Wal.
"Information and the technology that supports it are key assets, and proper governance of those assets can add significant business value."


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