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Richter subsidiaries buy Romanian drug retailer Bioplus Pharm

Two subsidiaries of Hungary's leading drugmaker Richter Gedeon, Gedeon Richter Romania S.A. and Armedica Trading, have acquired Romanian pharma retailer Bioplus Pharm for €600,000, Romanian financial daily Ziarul Financiar reported on Monday.

The sellers were businessmen Dan-Mihai Mihailescu (55%) and Victor Emilian Topalu (45%), according to information published in the Official Gazette. Bioplus Pharm runs a drugstore chain in Bucharest. The contract, in which Richter obtained a 94% stake in Bioplus Pharm, was concluded on October 23. Dan-Mihai Mihailescu transferred 8 shares to Gedeon Richter Farmacia for €400,000, while Victor Emilian Topalu transferred 8 shares to Richter for €200,000 and one share to Armedica Trading Ltd. Richter's spokesperson confirmed the report to Portfolio.hu, adding that they would announce the transaction officially as soon as the Romanian competition office approves the deal.

“We see the news as positive, although we do not expect major share price reaction due to the small scale of the transaction," Barbara Jánosi of KBC has said on Tuesday. She said her positive stance stemmed from the strategic fit of the retail drug chain into Richter's business. “We see this distribution channel as a good way to market Richer's oral contraceptive drugs in the Romanian capital, where the reproductive age females are most likely to apply birth control in the country," Jánosi added. There are no details on the size of the network, or sales. €600,000 represents 0.6% of Richter's 06E capex. There were some 700 pharmacies in Bucharest at the end of last year. The largest chain is Sensiblu with 200 sites, of which 63 are in Bucharest. Nationwide, the largest pharmacy chains in Romania have less than 100 outlets. “Our first reaction is "so what", and then "why?". Richter lost as much as 1.6% yesterday on average volumes, while the Hungarian market traded flat," Jiri Stanik of Wood has commented. (Mti-Eco, portfolio.hu)