Reckitt Benckiser to Buy Paras Pharma for $726M

Reckitt Benckiser will pay 32.6 billion rupees ($726 million) for private equity-backed Paras Pharmaceuticals, Reuters reported. Buyout shop Actis owns 63% of India’s Paras. Other shareholders include Silicon Valley-based venture firm Sequoia Capital. UK-based Reckitt Benckiser produces a wide range of household, health and personal care products. Actis has $4.7 billion under management.

(Reuters) – British consumer goods company Reckitt Benckiser said on Sunday it agreed to buy privately-held Indian firm Paras Pharmaceuticals for 32.6 billion rupees ($726 million).

Paras, which is expected to clock sales of more than 1 million rupees in 2010, makes several over-the-counter medications, including Moov pain relief ointment, Krack heel care lotion, and D’Cold cold remedy.

Private equity firm Actis, which owns 63 percent of Paras, and the firm’s other shareholders have agreed to sell their stakes in the company. Paras’ other shareholders include Sequoia Capital, Paras founder Girish Patel and his family.

In October, India’s Business Standard newspaper reported that GlaxoSmithKline Plc, Sanofi-Aventis , Novartis AG and U.S.-based Johnson & Johnson had submitted concrete bids to acquire majority stake in Paras.

It reported that Japan’s Taisho Pharmaceutical had also been expected to join the race.

Reckitt Benckiser was advised by JP Morgan on the deal. Actis and the other Paras shareholders were advised by Morgan Stanley.

(Reporting by Michael Erman; Editing by Anshuman Daga)