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With Federated acquisition, Cari-Med eyes US market

Published:Wednesday | December 31, 2014 | 12:00 AM
File Chairman and owner of the Cari-Med group of companies, Glenford Christian.

Cari-Med said it will leverage the strong brands of Federated Pharmaceuticals, including Cetamol and DPH, which are household names in Jamaica, to expand the lines and explore opportunities for export.

Last week, the Campari Group revealed that Cari-Med, through subsidiary Kirk Distributors Limited, would be acquiring Federated Pharmaceutical Company, a division of J Wray & Nephew, for US$14.4 million (about $1.6 billion).

Cari-Med said on Monday that it would be using the purchase to explore opportuni-

ties overseas, including the United States, where Federated Pharmaceutical brands are well known by Jamaicans in the tri-state area and Florida.

In a release, Cari-Med said that with the purchase, Kirk Distributors heralds its entry into the pharmaceutical industry "after having concen-

trated for the past eight years on solidifying its fast-moving consumer-goods distribution business."

Cari-Med noted that Federated Pharmaceuticals has excess manufacturing capacity, which will present opportunities for contract manufacturing of ethical prescription pharmaceuticals and over-the-counter (OTC) medications through arrangements with existing partners.

"These arrangements will be especially attractive in the case of OTCs, which traditionally attract high duties upon entering CARICOM," it said.

Federated Pharmaceuticals was founded in 1958 and now manufactures a range of over- the- counter pharmaceuticals, with the main categories being analgesics, cough, cold, and allergy medications, antacids and vitamins/supplements.

CONTROLLING INTEREST

The Lascelles Group held controlling interest in the company from 1965 until 2012, when Lascelles deMercado was acquired by the Italian-based Campari Group.

Since then, Federated Pharma-ceuticals has operated as a division of J. Wray & Nephew, a member of the Campari Group.

Kirk Distributors Limited was established in 2006, following the acquisition by Glen Christian, founder and Chairman of Cari-Med Limited, of the assets of Colgate Palmolive Company Jamaica Limited and the distribution rights for their products.

The company's current portfolio includes Colgate-Palmolive, Johnson & Johnson, Listerine, Clorox, Voortman, J. P. Foods Farco, Rapid Kill, Coffee Traders, Crystal Spring, and Lovable Diapers.

In 2012, Kirk Distributors purchased the Kendel brand

of food products, including ginger tea, vegetable oil, jasmine rice, canned mackerel and sausages, canned vegetables, and coconut milk powder.

avia.collinder@gleanerjm.com