Bangalore-based Biocon said on June 29 that it would tie-up with USA’s Mylan to supply biosimilars. Mylan will have “exclusive commercialisation rights in the US, Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and in the European Union and countries of the European Free Trade Association” says a report in Business Line.
This bears out what I said in my earlier post about Indian biotech companies ending up as back-end suppliers to larger drug makers in high-value developed markets. Biocon is no small start-up. We are talking about one of India’s largest biotech companies. And it appears to have signed away commercialisation rights to some of the biggest markets for biosimilars. For, if you read the Biocon press release, then Biocon has “co-exclusive” commercialisation rights with Mylan only in the markets not mentioned above. That I presume would be the emerging markets.
Readers may recall that in February 2008, Biocon said it would acquire 70 per cent in German marketing and distribution firm Axicorp. One of the things that Axicorp was supposed to do was help market and distribute biosimilars. Now if Mylan has “exclusivity” in Germany what does that do to Axicorp’s role in the German biosimilars market, I wonder.