Takeda Comes to America
Takeda's co-promotion with Eli Lilly on pioglitazone is the Japanese company's most ambitious attempt to date to create a US marketing organization. Unlike previous Japanese attempts to enter the US market, Takeda has learned to take full advantage of the value of its product, getting Lilly to subsidize its entry strategy.
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Takeda Pharmaceutical's drug business started out manufacturing and selling bismuth-the basic ingredient in Pepto-Bismol--in 1895. A century later, it's still chained to the stomach-settling game with Prevacid, a $1.4 billion drug whose patent will expire in 2009, taking with it a huge percentage of Takeda's earnings. That's one big reason why Japan's largest and most international pharmaceutical company is on a US-focused dealmaking tear. Since February, Takeda has inked three major licensing partnerships and completed the largest acquisition in its history in a desperate attempt to shore up a thin pipeline.
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