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Co-op To Make Medicines in China (China)

This article was originally published in PharmAsia News

Executive Summary

The Co-operative Group, Britain's biggest mutual retailer, has become the first British business to manufacture its own prescription drugs in China as part of a joint venture with a leading pharmaceutical company. The venture marks the first time that a British retailer has established its own drugs manufacturing business. Sants, one of the Co-operative's subsidiaries, is to invest 20 million Pounds toward the development of a manufacturing plant in Tianjin, as part of a joint venture agreement with Tasly Group, one of China's largest herbal medicine manufacturers. Tasly owns 40 percent of Sants. The deal will allow the Co-op, which operates more than 600 pharmacies in Great Britain as well as wholesaling businesses, to have greater control over its supply chain. John Nuttall, managing director of healthcare for the group, says: "This is a milestone in our development which has clear benefits for our business. It will help protect our commercial return as the government puts increasing pressure on suppliers to cut the wholesale cost of prescription drugs." Production at the new factory is expected to start within a year. Sants is to supply the medicines to the Co-op's pharmacy outlets and look for opportunities to market the drugs across the EU. Tasly is one of China's top three pharmaceutical suppliers. (Print Edition Only: Link to Full Text Unavailable
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