Sunshine completes Akbar Pharmaceuticals acquisition

Sunshine Holdings PLC yesterday (25) announced that its subsidiary Sunshine Healthcare Lanka Ltd. (SHL) has completed the acquisition of Akbar Pharmaceuticals (Pvt.) Ltd. 

In a disclosure to Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE), Sunshine noted that 2,994,189 voting shares have been acquired by Sunshine at a consideration of Rs. 2,320,249,300 and the consideration for such acquisition was settled by the issuance of 2,758,178 ordinary voting shares in SHL to Akbar Brothers (Pvt.) Ltd. (ABL). Furthermore, the company transferred 330,981 ordinary voting shares held by the company in SHL to ABL at a cash consideration of Rs. 278,429,916.  

The parties completed the said transaction yesterday. 

In December last year, Sunshine Holdings PLC announced the merger of their healthcare business consisting of Sunshine Healthcare Lanka and Healthguard Pharmacy with the healthcare arm of Akbar Brothers. It consists of Akbar Pharmaceuticals, Lina Manufacturing, and Lina Spiro.

The merger was said to create Sri Lanka’s first fully integrated healthcare company starting from manufacturing up to retailing of healthcare products, including last-mile distribution across the country for all healthcare products. The company was also said to be operating in all five segments of the healthcare supply chain, namely R&D, manufacturing, importation, distribution, and retail.

Sunshine believes that the merger will enhance the pharmaceutical manufacturing capacity in the country with both business groups working together to invest in this sector. 

In a recent exclusive interview with The Morning, SHL CEO Shantha Bandara stated that both the parties have been having discussions since mid last year with regard to the merger. 

“We had to bring in more clarity to the table for both parties – how the future would be. It is much like two families marrying into one company, so I think both parties are valued. There is quite a bit of trust in terms of becoming a single largest value chain player, and that played out well for both companies. It has taken quite some time last year for this to be materialised in early January,” Bandara added.

When asked about what would be the name of the merged company, Bandara added that they will not have a merged company name but will continue to go as Akbar Pharmaceuticals for the agency business. “Sunshine Healthcare, being the mother company for all these businesses, will take over Akbar Pharmaceuticals and Lina Manufacturing into Sunshine Healthcare, which will be the main entity. Meanwhile, we already have a retail arm, Healthguard Pharmacy Ltd. All of these will be under Sunshine Healthcare Lanka Ltd., but they will have separate entity names, continuing as they have already have. We would use this entity strategically for those reasons that they are in and we will grow. Of course, there will be integration. For example, Sunshine Healthcare is very strong in distribution. We have our distribution arm. So it is a low-hanging fruit for us to immediately merge the distribution and take it under Sunshine Healthcare distribution. That is something we will do immediately,” he added.

Speaking further, he noted that before the merger, the SHL market share was 12% and with the merger in the agency business, this will move by half a percentage. However, in the future, they will reach Lina Manufacturing to bring in certain products into the market; therefore, a jump over 15% within the next two to three years can be expected, according to him.