Elanco, the animal health division of Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE:LLY), announced this week that Lilly will invest approximately $100 million USD to purchase a minority equity stake in China Animal Healthcare Ltd. (SEHK:0940, SGX-ST:EP4), one of the leading players in the animal health industry in the People’s Republic of China. Completion of this purchase is subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions. The investment expands Elanco’s commitment to China, with the goal of providing innovative, safety-enhancing food production solutions to help meet the growing food demands and nutritional needs of the Chinese people. The parties have agreed to a framework to allow for future commercial collaboration activities.

“At Elanco, we are committed to providing innovative solutions to enhance food production and companion animal care,” says Jeff Simmons, president, Elanco. “In China, we are working with local stakeholders to improve the health and performance of animals and help to ensure a growing supply of safe, affordable and abundant food. Our sizable financial investment in China Animal Healthcare builds on our long-term commitment to China. By working with local stakeholders, together, we can make a real difference in the lives of the Chinese people.”

This investment expands Elanco’s existing commitments to support China’s effort to modernize agriculture, including

  • Elanco’s R&D hub in Shanghai to deliver innovative solutions to local farmers.
  • Supporting veterinary training through scholarships at 4 agricultural universities,  
  • Working with Heifer International in Weichang County in Hebei Province to provide more than 1,000 families a beef heifer, increasing income, diversifying diets and improving nutrition and health.

With global population expected to exceed 9 billion in the next 40 years, some of the greatest growth – about 750 million – will come from Asia, driving significant demand for meat, milk and eggs. China is poised to help meet this demand. By the end of this decade the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization predicts about 25 percent of the production growth for meat will come from China alone.