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Torrent brothers divide business; Samir Mehta to take charge of Pharma

Posted by : Varun Doshi

On : 03 June 2014

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Views : 2483


In a major management re-shuffle after the acquisition of the branded formulations business of Elder Pharmaceuticals last year, Ahmedabad-based pharma major Torrent Pharmaceuticals has decided to hand over the reigns of the company in the hands of its new chairman, Samir Mehta, as his elder brother Sudhir Mehta decided to relinquish his position as the chairman of the board of directors.

The appointment is subject to the approval of shareholders in the next annual general meeting.

The Rs 4,200 crore company said in a statement here, "Sudhir Mehta, the chairman of Torrent Pharmaceuticals has expressed his desire to relinquish his position as chairman of the board of directors and the company from the conclusion of the forthcoming annual general meeting of the company scheduled on July 30, 2014." The Board has acceded to his desire and also requested him to accept the position of chairman emeritus of the company.

Torrent Pharma, was founded by UN Mehta, father of the outgoing chairman Sudhir Mehta.The foundations for Torrent were laid when Trinity Laboratories began operations in the early 1970s, a company started by UN Mehta After his death, his elder son Sudhir took over as the chairman of the Group in 1998. The 1954-born entrepreneur turned his focus on exports, and he was instrumental is charting out the company's entry into the international markets.

He forayed into the Russian market at a time when the region was going through turbulent times in terms of political instability. His decision paid off, as Torrent today has a strong presence in the European countries, Russia as well as Brazil.Together with his brother Samir Mehta, he focussed on building manufacturing facilities.Torrent Pharma now has manufacturing facilities in Mehsana in Gujarat, apart from one each in tax havens of Himachal Pradesh and Sikkim.

His younger brother, Samir Mehta, who holds a Master's Degree in Business Management, has been associated with the company since 1986.

He has played a crucial role in establishing Torrent Pharma on foreign shores, especially in markets like Brazil, Germany and USA. Currently, international business accounts to about 60 per cent of the total revenue of the company.

After taking over from his father, Sudhir Mehta also led Torrent's diversification into the power sector, in the mid-90s and markedTorrent's foray into this sector by acquiring controlling stake in the Ahmedabad Electricity Co. Ltd and the Surat Electricity Co. Ltd. Around 1991, when the Central government announced major policy changes allowing private sector participation in the power sector, Sudhir had started quietly acquiring the shares in the above companies and finally gained a majority stake by late 1990s. Sudhir Mehta's two sons have been associated with the Group's power business.

Over the past few years, Samir Mehta has been actively involved in the Group's pharma business, and it is said that the transition began around 2010.

On Friday, Torrent Pharmaceuticals announced its annual results. For the full year, the company's profit after tax grew by 53 per cent to Rs 664 crore, while the revenues were up 30 per cent to Rs 4,184 crore for FY14.