India’s Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has announced plans to reorganise its businesses into two separate units – specialty and generics.

Glenmark Generics will become a wholly-owned subsidiary and will be listed on the Indian stock exchanges next year, according to the chief executive of the parent group, Glenn Saldanha. Explaining the rationale behind the move, he said that both the speciality and generics operations have expanded immensely, “posing a growth challenge of managing two large, but diverse businesses”.

Glenmark Pharmaceuticals will its novel R&D and branded formulation businesses in India, Latin America (excluding Argentina), the CIS countries, Africa and Asia, while some of the firm’s manufacturing plants and sales units in the USA, UK and Argentina will move under the control of Glenmark Generics. The new entity will also inherit the firm’s Goa plant for formulations and three active pharmaceutical ingredient facilities elsewhere in India.

As for the planned IPO next year, Terrance Coughlin, who will be chief executive of the new unit, said “we would not be diluting more than 30% of Glenmark Generics through a fresh issue of shares”. The capital raised will be used to expand the specialty business in the USA and further expand the group’s “generic foot print globally through acquisitions…and focus on expansion into other niche segments”. For fiscal 2008, Glenmark projects the generics business to have revenues of $180 million in FY08, while speciality sales will be over $300 million.

A fortnight ago, Eli Lilly has linked up with Glenmark Pharmaceuticals to get access to the latter’s GRC 6211, a potential next-generation treatment for various pain conditions, including osteoarthritis, which is in Phase II. Also The US Food and Drug Administration has just approved an additional Phase II study to be carried out by Glenmark’s Swiss unit for GRC 3886 (oglemilast) for the treatment of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease., a phosphodiesterase-4 inhibitor which is licensed to Forest Laboratories in North America and to Teijin Pharma in Japan.