Alvogen, the US generics firm headed up by ex-Actavis chief executive Robert Wessman, is expanding its operations in Eastern Europe and has opened an office in Bucharest, Romania.

Mr Wessman, Alvogen’s executive chairman, said that “we see great opportunities for our business in Eastern Europe, and the creation of Alvogen Romania is integral to our development strategy”. He added that “through registration of our own products, portfolio acquisitions and strategic partnerships, we aim to build a strong presence in the market with a targeted product offering”.

The Romanian pharmaceutical market generates annual sales totaling $3 billion and Alvogen believes the market will experience strong growth as healthcare infrastructure in the country improves. The subsidiary will have more than 60 employees.

Opening the Romanian office comes a few weeks after Alvogen opened an office in Shanghai, China. The firm said that the Chinese market represents “a strategic gateway for future business development in Asia” and the new subsidiary will serve as “a global sourcing unit for active pharmaceutical ingredients and finished products” across the world.

Alvogen chief executive Doug Drysdale said that “within the next five years, we aim to be one of the strongest pharmaceutical companies in China”. He added that it is “our vision to build a leaner and more flexible multinational operation that overcomes the challenges of the traditional generics business mode”.

After leaving Iceland’s Actavis, Mr Wessman bought a 30% stake in Alvogen last summer. The company is looking to focus on producing hard-to-copy drugs and expanding in emerging markets.