Bristol-Myers enlists DKSH to push its drugs in Asia

Bristol-Myers Squibb ($BMY) is re-upping with market-access outfit DKSH to dial up its commercialization efforts in Asia, extending a deal signed in 2010.

Under the agreement, DKSH will provide marketing, sales, warehousing, distribution and collection for Bristol-Myers in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. For Bristol-Myers, the deal allows it to consolidate its number of service providers, reducing costs and oversight, while DKSH is using its latest contract as a springboard to more growth, the company said.

Last year, the Swiss firm's healthcare business brought in about $4.9 billion, and it has expanded to employ about 9,000 people across 150 sites in 14 countries, the company said.

The Bristol-Myers re-up is DKSH's fifth Big Pharma partnership over the past year, on the heels of Asia-focused deals with Sanofi ($SNY), Bayer, GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK) and Pfizer ($PFE).

DKSH has been expanding its offerings around the continent over the past year, getting into contract manufacturing and closing bolt-on acquisitions to grow its footprint. In February, DKSH bought out a Macau distributor to widen its regional presence, and, last summer, the company opened a 14,000-square-foot South Korean facility to distribute its clients devices, drugs and medical supplies in that country's swelling market.

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