GSK Pharma to invest Rs 1K cr in Karnataka plant

Mumbai: Global healthcare company GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals Ltd is investing Rs 1,000 crore in a new state-of-the-art pharmaceutical unit in Karnataka and is looking at enhancing its global pipeline in areas like respiratory drugs and vaccines in India.

“We are investing Rs 1,000 crore in a new state-of-the- art pharmaceutical factory in Vemgal, Karnataka. The factory will initially supply a range of solid dose form products. The factory will commence production in 2018 and produce more than 8 billion tablets and 1 billion capsules a year,” the company said in its annual report.

“We will focus on securing reliable supply of our high- quality medicines to patients through our manufacturing facility in Nashik, Maharashtra and our upcoming facility in Vemgal, Karnataka. We will continue to bring the best of our innovative global pipeline in areas like respiratory and vaccines to our patients in India,” GSK India managing director A Vaidheesh said.

The company is assessing new products from its global respiratory and vaccines pipeline and reviewing these for a possible launch in India. In addition, it is also reviewing complementary inorganic opportunities, the company said, adding that nearly 30 per cent of global pharmaceutical volumes sold by GSK is sold in the country.

The drug major is also upgrading its existing Nashik facility. In compliance with the GSK respiratory free strategy and the WHO requirement for the segregated manufacturing of hormonal products, GSK India has invested Rs 115 crore to construct a dedicated facility
for the manufacturing of Eltroxin. The new eltroxin facility will be fully operational in 2018.

The company said it continues to enjoy a leadership position in many of the therapy areas in which it provides solutions to patients. Six of the companys brands feature in the top-50 IPM brand list, namely Augmentin, Calpol, Zinetac, Betnovate-N, Betnovate-C and Synflorix. The company has also taken initiatives to re-engineer its business model to maintain competitive margins, it said.

GSK India strives to derive profitable volume growth in a competitive and partly price-controlled generic market with focus on delivering quality products. It is also enhancing its technological capabilities to optimise its medical and field force engagement with healthcare professionals.

The company welcomed the governments move of doctors prescribing low-cost generic medicines.

The company also applauds the governments efforts to ensure the quality of generic drugs approved by the state FDAs.

“We understood that these may now require bio-equivalence studies to be conducted for all drugs for category II and category IV of the biopharmaceutical classification system.

“However, we urge that such quality assurance measures should be extended to existing licensed generics also in the interests of patients. In addition, there should be an emphasis on adherence to global manufacturing standard certified by the World Health Organisation,” it said.