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Business Roundup

March 8, 2010 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 88, ISSUE 10

Evonik Industries has acquired H. C. Starck’s catalyst business for an undisclosed sum. The business makes activated nickel catalysts for pharmaceutical chemicals, polyurethane intermediates, and sweeteners. Evonik will move production from Goslar to Hanau, both towns in Germany.

Brenntag, a German company that calls itself the world leader in full-line chemical distribution, plans an initial public offering of stock. It hopes to raise about $685 million. Brenntag is owned mostly by the private equity firm BC Partners.

Perstorp, a Swedish specialty chemical producer, has set up an applications development center in the Ghatkopar suburb of Mumbai. The firm says it has also increased its sales force in India.

Dow Chemical and E. A. Juffali & Brothers of the United Arab Emirates have formed a business alliance in the field of polyurethane systems. The partners plan to build a polyol blending facility this year in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Regulus Therapeutics, a joint venture between Alnylam Pharmaceuticals and Isis Pharmaceuticals, has joined with Glaxo­Smith­Kline to develop drugs that target microRNA-122, which is expressed in the liver and is critical for the replication of hepatitis C virus. Regulus will get an undisclosed up-front fee and could score more than $150 million in milestone payments.

NicOx has signed a deal granting Bausch & Lomb worldwide rights to develop NCX 116, a nitric oxide-donating prostaglandin F2α analog for treatment of glaucoma and ocular hypertension. NicOx will get $10 million up front and could reap future payments of up to $169.5 million.

PPD has opened a contract research facility in Athlone, Ireland, which contains an analytical testing laboratory that meets FDA’s current Good Manufacturing Practices standard. PPD is investing $19 million in the facility and plans to create 250 jobs.

WuXi PharmaTech will provide toxicology and other preclinical services to Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research & Development under a new agreement. At the same time, J&J will train WuXi personnel in good laboratory practices at WuXi’s new 314,000-sq-ft toxicology facility in China.



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