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February 4, 2004

Taisho Pharmaceutical to Sell its Participation
in Sanofi-Synthelabo-Taisho Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd. to
Sanofi-Synthelabo



Taisho Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. (Headquarters: Tokyo, Japan / President: Akira Uehara) announced today on February 4th, 2004, that the company has agreed with Sanofi-Synthelabo (Headquarters: Paris, France / Chairman and CEO: Jean-Francois Dehecq) to dissolve a joint venture contract for Sanofi-Synthelabo-Taisho Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd. Taisho Pharmaceutical will sell off its 49% share of the joint venture to Sanofi-Synthelabo as of March 31, 2006.

Sanofi-Synthelabo-Taisho Pharmaceuticals was established in September 1983 with the aim of promoting and developing Sanofi-Synthelabo products for the Japanese market. The company is now responsible for the sales in Japan of Ancaron(TM) (amiodarone hydrochloride), an antiarrhythmic agent. With the sell-off, the joint venture will belong to Sanofi-Synthelabo K.K. (Headquarters: Tokyo/President and Representative Director: Philippe Fauchet) , a wholly owned subsidiary of Sanofi-Synthelabo in Japan.

Until the date of the sell-off, Taisho Pharmaceutical and Sanofi-Synthelabo K.K will collaborate to promote Ancaron(TM) to Japanese cardiovascular specialists. The two will also cooperate in the gradual transfer of marketing initiatives to Sanofi-Synthelabo K.K.

Taisho Pharmaceutical will sell its shares at a price that matches the value of its stake in the joint venture. The company also intends to continue its involvement in the production and marketing of Ancaron(TM), and to contribute to efforts for the dissemination of the drug in Japan.

Management of the clinical trials for the development of injectable Amiodarone (amiodarone i.v.) has already been passed to Sanofi-Synthelabo K.K. from Taisho in 2003. This drug has been designated as an orphan drug by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare.


Corporate Profile: 
Sanofi-Synthelabo-Taisho Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd.

Established: September 1983
Activities: Development and sales of products developed by Sanofi-Synthelabo in Japan
Headquarters: Bungei Shunju Annex, 3-23 Kioi-cho, Chiyoda-ku Tokyo 102-0094 Japan 
Capital: 10 million yen
President: Philippe Fauchet

Sanofi-Synthelabo S.A.

Activities:  Pharmaceutical research and development/production/sales
Headquarters: 174 Avenue de France, Paris 75013 France
Chairman and CEO: Jean-Francois Dehecq

Sanofi-Synthelabo K.K.

Established: July 12, 1971
Headquarters: Bungei Shunju Annex, 3-23 Kioi-cho, Chiyoda-ku Tokyo 102-0094 Japan
Capital: 429.8 million yen
Shareholder: Sanofi-Synthelabo S.A.
Board of Directors:  Chairman and Representative Director: Hanspeter Spek
President and Representative Director: Philippe Fauchet

For further information:
Public Relations Section, Taisho Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.
81-3-3985-1115 (direct)
 
Mickey Ikeura
Corporate Communications/Public Relations, Japan
Sanofi-Synthelabo K.K.
81-3-5275-7123 (direct)