Dr Reddy's
India's pharma major, Dr. Reddy's said on Wednesday that it has acquired six over- the- counter (OTC) consumer healthcare brands from U.S drugmaker, Ducere Pharma. Pictured: Chairman of Dr. Reddy's Laboratories, Satish Reddy speaks during a news conference in Mumbai, India, August 5, 2015[REPRESENTATIONAL IMAGE]Reuters

India's pharma major, Dr. Reddy's, said on Wednesday that it has acquired six over-the-counter (OTC) consumer healthcare brands from U.S. drugmaker Ducere Pharma. With the acquisition, Dr. Reddy's has entered the branded OTC healthcare market in the U.S. and its value was estimated to be about $44 billion in 2013, according to the Statistics Portal.

The Indian pharma firm is already supplying generic medicines to the U.S., which is the largest drug market in the world. The acquisition of six brands is aimed to strengthen Dr. Reddy's cough and cold, pain and dermatology portfolio in the U.S. The OTC brands are Doan's, Bufferin, and Nupercainal ointment, Myoflex, Cruex Nail Gel and Comtrex.

Cough, cold, allergy and sinus OTC products constituted 19.2 percent share in the OTC market in 2013 and their annual sales were estimated at $7.7 billion, according to the Statistics Portal.

These six brands are currently being sold in more than 20,000 stores across the U.S. and their total sales were estimated at around $8 million in 2015. These brands are likely to give a major boost to Dr. Reddy's business in the U.S., where it registered sales of $200 million, the Mint reported.

"These legacy products enjoy strong brand equity built over several decades. We are extremely excited to be entering the branded consumer health arena through these brands and embarking upon the next avenue of growth for our OTC business in the U.S.," Alok Sonig, executive vice president and head of Dr. Reddy's in the U.S., said in a BSE filing.

Sonig said that Dr. Reddy's would work to further strengthen and promote the brands and expand their market in U.S.

The OTC market in the U.S. currently has more than 300,000 products and their number is only increasing as more drugs continue to move from prescription status to OTC. Americans spent nearly $44 billion on OTC drugs in 2015, which saved the country $102 billion in doctor visits, hospitalisations and prescription medicines, according to the New York Times.

The stock of Dr. Reddy's was trading at Rs. 3,094, at 10.35 a.m. on Thursday , up by 1.36 percent from its previous close.