NEW YORK, NY — U.S.-based pharmaceutical giant Janssen AG and its U.K. rival, Aquapharma, have reached a tentative agreement to sell about 10% of their businesses to Japanese firm Daiki, a Japanese company that makes AquaHealth products, according to people familiar with the matter.
The agreement marks the first major step in Daiki’s acquisition of Aqua Health, the largest U.A.B. brand, as well as its purchase of U.B.-listed pharmaceutical company Kansai Medical Holdings Ltd., the people said.
Daiki also owns about 3% of the Japanese health-care group Daiichi.
In addition to Aquapharms, Daiki is working on a merger of the two companies’ brands, and is working with its European and U.P. business partners to create a generic version of Aquaphar’s existing Aqua product line, the people added.
Daiki’s purchase of Aquaclabs will come as Daiki looks to improve its profitability in Asia amid a slowing economy.
Daikis share price has dropped about 15% since the beginning of the year, after it acquired a large stake in Japan’s second-largest bank, Daiichi Bank Ltd., for $3.6 billion in January.
Daiky also owns stakes in the Japanese entertainment group Sony Corp. and Tokyo Electric Power Co.
The Daiki deal, which will be completed in the first quarter of 2020, follows the Japanese financial regulator’s approval of a plan to sell Daiki assets in a merger with another Japanese firm.
The plan was approved in October, the Nikkei reported, citing people familiar.
The Japanese regulator approved the plan last month, after a review of Daiki and Aqua Health data.
Daike has not publicly commented on the merger, according the Nikken, which did not include details of the agreement.
In August, Daikii agreed to sell a majority stake in its U-brand pharmaceutical unit, Daiku Biotech Ltd., to the Tokyo-based Sanyo Chemical Co., according to the Nikkan.
In December, Daika agreed to pay $1.5 billion for Daikin Corp., a Japanese biotechnology company that develops new and existing drugs for use in the U.N. Food and Drug Administration, according data compiled by Bloomberg.
Daiken also agreed to buy another U.T.P.-listed company, BioSciences, for $1 billion.