SA’s third-biggest pharmaceutical company, Cipla Medpro SA, had acquired a 100% stake in local drug maker Anmaraté for R26.3m, it said on Monday.

Cipla said the acquisition formed part of its strategy to acquire selected products in the growing therapeutic categories.

Anmaraté develops and manufactures medical devices and medication.

Cipla MedPro SA, which is 100%-owned by Cipla India, is one of SA’s fastest growing pharmaceutical companies.

CEO Paul Miller said the group would be implementing "an intensive approach" to grow its portfolio of "quality" and affordable pharmaceutical solutions in more therapeutic areas.

The acquisition would "contribute greatly to Cipla’s top line and growth aspirations".

In March, Cipla India sold its southern African veterinary operations to healthcare group Ascendis for R375m. The deal would permit Ascendis to expand into the attractive veterinary drug market with high-margin products.

The deal followed a decision by Cipla India to focus on human healthcare only in SA. In July 2016, Cipla said it planned to invest R1.3bn in a biosimilar factory in Durban for cheaper new-generation cancer drugs.

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