Hindustan Latex may take over bleeding Goa, Kerala pharma cos

Written by Rajesh Ravi | Kochi | Updated: Dec 5 2013, 08:59am hrs
Contraceptive and lifecare products manufacturer Hindustan Latex (HLL) is likely to take over lossmaking Goa Antibiotics & Pharmaceuticals (GAPL) and Kerala State Drugs & Pharmaceuticals (KSDP). HLL is one of the world's largest manufacturers of male condoms. It also makes oral contraceptive pills, intra-uterine devices, blood transfusion bags, surgical sutures and rapid diagnostic kits.

Both the state public sector undertakings are lossmaking and GAPL has been referred to the Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction (BIFR). GAPL chairman SP Bhat told FE the Goa government is considering the proposal of HLL. GAPL was started in 1980 as a joint venture between Hindustan Antibiotics (HAL) Pune and EDC, a Goa government-owned financial institution. The shareholdings of HAL in GAPL were transferred in favour of EDC in 1987. HLL sources said the company has kept a proposal of taking over 74 % stake from EDC.

Bhat said that GAPL has, over the last three years, undergone an overhaul of its production processes and is likely to come out of BIFR.

KSDP was formed in 1974 to manufacture affordable drugs and is fully owned by Kerala. Highly placed sources said the state government has initiated a process of due diligence to the proposal of HLL. SBI Capital is carrying out the due diligence.