The agreements were signed in the presence of senior leaders of the Hangzhou municipal government. The proposed Sanofi-aventis-Minsheng joint venture will primarily focus on vitamins and mineral supplements (VMS).
Recently, Sanofi-aventis had announced its planned acquisition of Chattem, a manufacturer and marketer of branded consumer healthcare products, toiletries and dietary supplements in the US.
Hanspeter Spek, president of global operations at Sanofi-aventis, said: "We are pleased to take a significant step toward establishing the new consumer healthcare joint venture with Minsheng, our long-standing partner. Combined with our leadership position in vaccines, we will continue to contribute to preventative healthcare in China. Entering the world's second largest consumer healthcare market is also a strategic move for Sanofi-aventis to consolidate its position in consumer healthcare."
Zhu Fujiang, chairman of Minsheng Pharmaceutical, said: "We are equally excited about the prospect of forming the new consumer healthcare joint venture with Sanofi-aventis, after more than ten years of successful partnership. Sanofi-aventis is an energetic and dynamic company. His success with pharmaceuticals and vaccines has demonstrated his strong marketing capability.
"We hope that once materialized, the new venture will revitalize our consumer healthcare business and expand the reach of our products to benefit more consumers. We also hope that the new venture will serve as a platform for us to develop more health products in order to contribute to the local economy and meet consumer needs."