AstraZeneca has raised its bet on Japan's drug market by buying out the remaining stake held by Sumitomo Chemical in its Japanese unit AstraZeneca K.K.
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The British group said on Wednesday the purchase of the shares cost approximately 10 billion yen ($102 million) and reinforced its focus on Japan as a key growth platform.
Japan, the world's second-largest pharmaceuticals market after the United States, is an increasingly important country for Western drugmakers.
In the past, it has been a tough market for foreign drug firms to crack, but recent steps to speed up the approval process have opened the door to a raft of commercially important drugs.