Mehli Mistry buys stake in insulin company

MUMBAI: expelled Tata Group cousin of president Cyrus Mistry Mehli Mistry has acquired a significant minority stake in the manufacturer of insulin products based in the city MJ Biopharm .

Though the amount Mehli invested in MJ Biopharm couldn’t be ascertained, sources said the 59-year-old businessman has acquired a 20% stake in the company. Promoters Amol Shah and family own the balance 80% stake in MJ Biopharm. Mehli’s Meherji Pallonji Group, which he runs along with his younger brother Pheroze Mistry, has a presence in barging, shipping, painting, automobile dealerships and dredging. Mehli and Cyrus’s mothers are sisters. Mehli’s name had cropped up in the Cyrus Mistry versus Ratan Tata case over certain transactions between him and the Tata Group .

Mehli has routed the investment in MJ Biopharm through group flagship M Pallonji and Company and has one seat on the board of the drug producer. MJ Biopharm is Mehli’s second investment outside his core businesses after GNP MetLife insurance in which he owns 20%.

The closely-held M Pallonji u0026 Co reported a 34% rise in net profit to Rs 162 crore and a 97% jump in income to Rs 600 crore in fiscal 2018, regulatory filings showed. According to sources, apart from the robust growth clocked by the anti-diabetes drug market, Mehli’s interest in MJ Biopharm is driven by the fact that he himself is a diabetic. Incorporated in 2002, MJ Biopharm also manufactures anti-infective, anti-tuberculosis and neuro-psychiatry drugs. The firm has two manufacturing facilities - one in Taloja near Mumbai and the other in Pune.

According to AIOCD researcher Awacs, the chronic care segment exhibited double-digit growth in July 2019 with antidiabetics leading the segment with 15% growth, 13% cardio and 11% central nervous system. It is estimated that the diabetes market in India is worth Rs 11,500 million.

Reports had said that Mehli’s cordial relations with Cyrus became strained after the latter took over the reins of Tata Group . The contention, reports said, was that Cyrus wanted a “fair and transparent” contract awarding process to all firms, including the one being run by Mehli. This reportedly did not go down too well with Mehli, who then went to friend Ratan Tata against his cousin. The Tatas and Mehli have, however, refuted all the allegations.