Poland’s largest drug maker Polpharma reportedly in talks to take over Czechia’s Zentiva

Poland’s largest drug maker Polpharma reportedly in talks to take over Czechia’s Zentiva
Zentiva's Prague HQ.
By bne IntelliNews January 21, 2022

Polpharma, the largest pharmaceutical company in Poland, is in talks to buy Czech peer Zentiva from the US owner Advent International, Reuters reported on January 20.

The value of the deal is estimated at some $4bn (€3.53bn), the newswire said, based on conversations with three sources.

Reuters also reported that Polpharma was looking for investors who could potentially join the bid in exchange for a minority stake in Zentiva. JPMorgan bank has been hired to select the investors.

Zentiva is owned by the US firm Advent International, which is headquartered in Boston. Advent, a private equity firm, bought Zentiva from the French pharmaceutical major Sanofi for €1.9bn in 2018.

In mid-November, Advent and Zentiva denied reports in Czech media that a deal was imminent. 

Zentiva produces generic and over-the-counter medicines on a license from the French pharmaceutical concern Sanofi. The company sells its products in over 40 countries and has factories in Czechia, Romania, and India. The company acquired Romanian pharmaceutical producers Labormed and Solacium in 2019.

Polpharma’s main markets are Poland, Kazakhstan and Russia, but it also sells to the US, Japan, and Korea, the company says on its website.

Apart from Polish companies, Polpharma Group also comprises Santo/Chimpharm in Kazakhstan and Akrikhin in Russia. Farmaprojects is Polpharma’s partner in Spain.

Polpharma has also played an important role in combatting the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic in Poland. The company has commercialised the first generation of PCR coronavirus tests developed by Polish scientists.