WuXi gets a manufacturing subsidiary on the Chinese stock market

Chinese CRO WuXi PharmaTech ($WX) has pushed one of its manufacturing subsidiaries onto the local stock market, selling off a stake as it focuses on its high-growth biologics business.

The CRO, which is traded on the New York Stock Exchange, listed its SynTheAll Pharmaceutical business on China's New Third Board, an over-the-counter exchange founded in 2013. WuXi sold a 5.55% stake of the unit to SynTheAll's management for about $28 million, allowing its subsidiary to market those shares on the New Third Board. Two-thirds of those shares are subject to a lockup, with half becoming available after a year and the rest opening up after two.

SynTheAll focuses on process chemistry and manufacturing for small-molecule drugs, WuXi said, a capital-intensive mission the company believes will be better supported by giving it access to public markets. SynTheAll pulled in $142.1 million in revenue in 2013--about a quarter of the company's total--and $127.9 million for the first 9 months of this year, according to WuXi.

Shuffling SynTheAll's ownership will have no effect on WuXi's biologics manufacturing business, the company said.

Meanwhile, the CRO is forecasting 2015 revenue between $790 million and $800 million, good for 18% annual growth at midpoint. To get there, WuXi is planning to spend up to $200 million on capital projects, nearly double last year's budget, building new manufacturing outposts in China and expanding the company's genomics heft with new lab capacity.

- read the announcement

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