Yes, Sanofi-Aventis US is "just" a subsidiary, but it's still one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the country. As the US operations of global drugmaker Sanofi, the company develops, manufactures, and markets pharmaceutical products for a range of ailments. Its principal therapeutic areas include cardiovascular disease, central nervous system ailments, internal medicine, metabolic disorders, oncology, and ophthalmology. Some of its key products include injectable insulin Lantus, cancer drug Taxotere, thrombosis treatment Lovenox, and blood thinner Plavix. Also known as simply Sanofi US, the firm markets its parent's products in the US through its thousands of field sales professionals.
Sanofi-Aventis US also operates four research centers in Arizona, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. The firm's R&D functions are increasingly important to the global Sanofi operations as the drugmaker works to product new blockbuster drugs to replace those going off-patent, such as Plavix (co-marketed with Bristol-Myers Squibb), which will begin facing generic competition in the US market in 2012.
The subsidiary's production facility in Kansas City, Missouri, is one of its parent company's primary manufacturing sites, producing pharmaceuticals not only for sale in the US, but also for its many markets around the world. In addition, its facility in St. Louis, Missouri, offers contract pharmaceutical packaging for other manufacturers. Its services include filling of capsules, gel caps, or tablets in various sizes and shapes, including glass and plastic.
Sanofi-Aventis US handles the pharmaceuticals business of France-based parent Sanofi in the US market. It works alongside the US location of Sanofi's vaccines business, sister company Sanofi Pasteur Inc., and Sanofi's global animal health business, Merial, which is headquartered in the US.
In 2011 parent Sanofi established an even deeper footprint in the US market through the $20 billion acquisition of biotech firm Genzyme. Another sister company, US-based consumer health products maker Chattem, was added in late 2009. Genzyme and Chattem now represent the main biotechnology and consumer health subsidiaries of the Sanofi organization.