TVM Capital Healthcare invests $35m in Saudi generics and biosimilars

By Liza Laws

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images
© Getty Images

Related tags Biosimilars Biologics Manufacturing Contract manufacturing Supply chain

As Saudi Arabia seeks to make its healthcare system more cost-efficient, the private equity firm TVM Capital Healthcare is betting $35 million on the Saudi Arabia-based bio-generics provider Boston Oncology Arabia.

The Dubai and Singapore-based investor’s cash is aimed to accelerate the plans of Boston Oncology Arabia to move into full formulation and fill and finish manufacturing at its local facilities. TVM will also help the manufacturer to tap into the former’s international network to improve its access to international suppliers.

Boston Oncology Arabia is playing a key role in Saudi’s emerging pharmaceutical sector, said Orhan Osmansoy, managing partner at TVM Capital Healthcare, in a public statement. He added that they are “pleased to be on this journey with our co-investors Kanoo Ventures, as Boston Oncology Arabia helps to increase local production, reduce healthcare costs, and improve access to essential pharmaceuticals in the Kingdom.”

Biosimilar and generic growth in Saudi Arabia

Developing nations have traditionally imported specialty drugs from other parts of the world, which can lead to limited supplies and high costs to the local economy. Boston Oncology, headquartered in Massachusetts, US, and with manufacturing facilities in Saudi Arabia, was founded to improve access to specialty medicines in developing communities with simpler purchasing processes and lower costs.

One way Saudi Arabia is lowering the costs of medicines is the use of biosimilars and generics. The country’s biosimilars market was worth​ around $494.2 million in 2022 and could reach $2.7 billion by 2030, driven by the growing need for cost-effective biologic drugs for conditions including cancer and autoimmune disorders. Saudi Arabia’s market for generic pharmaceutical products, meanwhile, was valued at​ $3.4 billion in 2023 and is expected to reach $5.6 billion by 2032.

Part of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030​ is to make its healthcare system more effective and financially sustainable while improving access to healthcare. Boston Oncology Arabia is contributing to this goal as it manufactures approved formulations at lower prices than innovator drugs via its local facilities and licensing deals with the rest of the world.

Complex and competitive markets

Boston Oncology Arabia already has a long list of generics and biosimilars in its portfolio, including a generic for the cancer treatment sorafenib and a biosimilar for the immunology treatment adalimumab, which is marketed by AbbVie as Humira.

“Boston Oncology Arabia’s localization model is specifically designed to create value in complex and competitive markets,” said Abdullah Baaj, founder & CEO of Boston Oncology Arabia, in the statement. “TVM Capital Healthcare’s support enables us to strengthen our position and bring cutting-edge, specialized manufacturing to the [Gulf Cooperation Council] and [Middle East and North Africa] region, impacting the lives of millions of patients.”

In May, TVM Capital Healthcare closed its TVM Healthcare Afiyah Fund​ with $250 million, the largest of its kind with a major focus on supporting the key medical priorities of Saudi’s Vision 2030. Its first investments with the fund included Riyadh-based clinic network Baraya Extended Care and two European companies with products poised to enter the Saudi market: DEBx Medical and neurocare Group.

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