According to sources, Glenmark has already mandated merchant bankers to identify suitable targets.
If the deal materialises, it will be an Indian pharmaceutical company's first major acquisition of a specialty drug maker with branded products, manufacturing facilities and a large field force in the US.
However, the company declined to comment on the targets and the possible size of the acquisition.
"We have plans to acquire a specialty drug manufacturer in the US with scale and reach among doctors. It can be a significant investment, but it is too early to reveal any details," Glen Saldanha, chief executive officer and managing director, said.
The Rs 1,978-crore (Rs 19.78 billion) company is present in the US generic segment through its subsidiary Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Inc (GPI), which is the front-end business unit for Glenmark Generics (GGL), Glenmark's generic arm.
The acquisition in the US will be made by Glenmark Pharmaceuticals, which has branded and novel research drugs under development. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals has a wide portfolio of branded drugs and is expected to launch two new chemical entities for asthma and diabetes by 2012.
Sources said most Indian generic companies, such as Ranbaxy Laboratries and Dr Reddy's Lab, follow the strategy of supplying their generic to large pharmacy chains like Wal-Mart, CVS, Walgreens and Rite Aid for private label sales.
At present, Lupin is the only Indian drug major promoting its products directly to physicians but it is limited to only a few products like Suprax, a branded antibiotic for controlling infection.
The US is the largest drug market in the world and accounts for almost half of the global drug sales of more than $700 billion.
In the past, Glenmark acquired Laboratorios Klinger in Brazil, Bouwer Bartlett, a sales and marketing company in South Africa, and Medicamenta, a pharmaceutical marketing and manufacturing company in the Czech Republic.