Italy's Menarini has hit the acquisition trail and bought Invida of Singapore, having chosen the Asia-Pacific region as a key area for growth.

Invida was formed in 2005 by Temasek Holdings, Quintiles and Zuellig. The groups are selling a firm which has turnover of around 160 million, 3,500 employees "and a consolidated presence in a number of extremely important therapeutic areas". Financial details have not been disclosed.

Menarini sees Indiva as "the ideal company to serve as a gateway for many significant emerging countries. Specifically, it is looking at Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam, as well as Singapore.

Invida is particularly active in dermatology, primary care, consumer health and specialty treatments. It has partnerships in place with many of the world's major drugmakers, including Pfizer, Sanofi, GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis, and sells over 70 brands in 13 markets.

Chief executive Alberto Giovanni Aleotti said that "we have been committed to the acquisition of Invida for some time”, adding that "we look forward to gaining first-hand experience of the great vitality of this region". The latter "is a place where one can find a strong concentration of highly skilled professionals and companies, thanks to the Singaporean government’s policies that support business growth and innovation,” he concluded.