Generics drugmaker Par Pharmaceutical has reached an agreement to acquire privately-held Anchen Pharmaceuticals.

Par is prepared to part with $410 million in cash to get hold of Anchen, which specialises in extended-release and niche generics. It has five commercialised products, 27 Abbreviated New Drug Applications pending with the US Food and Drug Administration (five of which are believed to be first-to-file) and 26 additional products in development.

Anchen anticipates launching eight-ten niche generic products over the next two years. The Irvine, California-headquartered firm has 218 employees "and over 72,000 square feet of expandable manufacturing and warehouse facilities with state-of-the-art equipment".

Par chief executive Patrick LePore said that Anchen has "an excellent development track record and robust product pipeline, which, when combined with Par's existing capabilities and pipeline, more than doubles our product opportunities". The transaction is expected to be immediately accretive to earnings in 2011 and Par noted that it will finance the deal with the help of a $350 million term loan.