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Hisun-Pfizer Pharmaceutical to Hire 600 China Staff by Year-End

Pfizer Inc.’s joint venture with Zhejiang Hisun Pharmaceutical Co. plans to hire 600 people in China by the end of the year, its chief executive officer said.

Hisun-Pfizer Pharmaceuticals Co., is seeking employees for manufacturing, research and development, commercial and support functions such as finance, Chief Executive Officer Kevin Xiao said in a phone interview yesterday. Hisun-Pfizer aims to have about 1,000 employees in the world’s most populous nation by December, and around 1,500 by the end of 2013, Xiao said.

“We are trying to attract appropriate people for the positions,” said Xiao, who was previously a general manager at New York-based Pfizer’s China business. “So far, in the sales force, we have more Pfizer people, but in manufacturing, it’s the other way around.”

Pfizer, the world’s largest drugmaker, holds a 49 percent stake in the venture, while Zhejiang Hisun holds the rest. The companies signed the framework agreement for the venture in February during Chinese vice-president Xi Jinping’s visit to the U.S. Xi and former U.S. Secretary of Commerce John Bryson attended the signing ceremony, the companies said in a statement yesterday.

The venture has a total investment of $295 million and registered capital of $250 million, the companies said. The venture will offer products for cardiovascular disease, infectious disease, oncology, and mental health, they said.

“These are two totally different companies -- one state-owned, the other one a big multinational,” Xiao said. “We need to balance the foreign and local culture, practice and mindset. That’s a pretty big challenge for us.”

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