Domestic pharma firms facing challenging environment: Cipla

By: | Updated: September 28, 2016 10:10 PM

Pharma firm Cipla today said that environment for the domestic pharma companies remain challenging with more products coming under price control and urged the government to support the industry.

In keeping with it strategy for the future, Cipla has launched a new division called Cipla New Ventures (CNV) to build newer innovation-led businesses. (Source: IE)In keeping with it strategy for the future, Cipla has launched a new division called Cipla New Ventures (CNV) to build newer innovation-led businesses. (Source: IE)

Pharma firm Cipla today said that environment for the domestic pharma companies remain challenging with more products coming under price control and urged the government to support the industry.

“The environment for domestic pharma companies remains challenging with more products coming under price control and other pressures such as government legislation to ban certain fixed dose combination drugs,” Cipla Chairman YK Hamied told shareholders at the company’s 80th annual general meeting (AGM) here.

Hamied said with the tightening of new product registration procedure, the approval time to market newer products has been significantly impacted.

“We do hope that the government will look into some of these challenges pragmatically to ease the operational environment for the pharma industry,” he added.

Hamied urged that many countries are dependent on India for their drugs.

“Now that our pharma industry is at the forefront of health-care, the government should be fully supporting,” he added.

He said the future is moving towards biological medicines, prevention, self-care, tele medicines and advanced diagnosis.

In keeping with it strategy for the future, Cipla has launched a new division called Cipla New Ventures (CNV) to build newer innovation-led businesses. CNV is exploring multiple platforms of opportunities to tap in to future possibilities, which also involves manufacturing and marketing biotech products for cancer, respiratory, diabetes and auto-immune diseases, he said.

Cipla is also exploring the potential of adding newer therapeutic value of older drugs, both individually and the fixed dose combinations for a variety of disorders. The company has also entered the OTC market in India, with its subsidiary, Cipla Health Ltd and have successfully launched its first product, Nicotex aimed at people to quit smoking.

The chairman said, “We are confident that Cipla will continue to provide many affordable drugs in our chosen therapy areas and our chosen markets. Last year, we increased our budget on R&D to 6 per cent of our turnover, a trend we seek to stay committed to. This focus will secure the future of the company and will overall benefit the patients.

Cipla is targeting 10-12 per cent growth in the domestic market in next two to three years, its newly elected Managing Director and Global Chief Executive Umang Vohra said.

The company will be targeting its three main markets — India, US and South Africa — for growth. Increased R&D as well as better product mix is expected to aid the growth, he said.

Cipla’s first quarter results for 2016-17, have shown continued momentum in key markets accompanies by improvement in base business margins.

This is a result of our conscious decision to focus on and deepen our presence in priority markets, which include India, South Africa and USA, Hamied added.

The company will continue to see the impact of currency volatility in emerging markets. The company has improved the quality of its earnings on account of focused efforts on product mix and cost containment measures resulting in better operating margins.

However, a lot more need to be done in terms of growth and profitability, he added.

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