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Merger pill to revive Standard Pharma

Calcutta, Nov. 2: Opec Innovations Ltd, the city-based pharmaceutical company, is being merged with Standard Pharmaceuticals (SPL) in a union which will take retrospective effect from April 2003.

The Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction (BIFR), to which both the companies were referred due to the erosion in their net-worth, has approved the merger proposal on October 9 after it received consent from all the banks.

Confirming the move, Standard Pharma managing director . P. Mall said the merger option was proposed to make both the units viable in the long run.

“SPL, being one of the oldest pharma company in the country, lost its market share in the early nineties and so had happened with Opec Innovations. We pitched in the company as an investor in 1995 when the Sarabhai group transferred their stake. Since then, we tried to pursue the BIFR with the merger proposal which will save both the companies and their employees,” he said.

The Rs 300-crore Mall group has also embarked on a business restructuring exercise for Standard Pharma in order to have a balanced product-mix. It will diversify into ayurvedic formulations as well as bio-fertiliser in a big way besides having its original allopathic formulations unit.

“We expect Standard Pharma to be identified as a leading ayurvedic and bio-fertiliser company in the next five years from this region,” Mall said.

For the bio-fertiliser products, the company has recently tied up with the Visva Bharati university for research and training programmes.

Standard Pharma is planning a trial production for its fertiliser products on 500 acres of land near Panagarh in Burdwan.

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