Updated on 15 February 2013
What kind of growth has Kemwell Biopharma witnessed in the last few years and what's your vision for the future?
Kemwell has been in the contract manufacturing business for the last 30 years, starting by supplying to the domestic market. In the last seven-to-eight years Kemwell has seen a dramatic increase in global business and has now started supplying to over 80 countries worldwide. Through the acquisition of a Pfizer manufacturing facility in Sweden and Greenfield investments in India, we have seen growth of greater than 20 percent a year. In the last two years, Kemwell has set up four new world-class facilities. These include a liquids plant that can manufacture up to 300 million bottles-per-year, a biologics drug substance manufacturing plant with 20,00l scale bioreactors, an aseptic fill-finish facility and laboratories for formulation and process development of both large and small molecules.
Where do you see more growth in India from among the various services that are provided by Kemwell and what do you think are the reasons for the same?
India has already established itself as a destination for API manufacturing. Now, large growth will come in product development services and commercial manufacturing. Kemwell itself is seeing growth in many fronts today. Our commercial manufacturing business is growing rapidly and now with the US FDA approval for our oral solids facility, we hope to further expand our business on this front. Our R&D business has grown rapidly in the last three-to-four years and will continue to grow rapidly. I strongly feel that our customers, both in India and abroad are looking at outsourcing to strategic partners rather than just suppliers. They are looking at consolidating their business to a select few partners across the globe.
Indian biologicals manufacturers have faced many issues in the last couple of years. What are your views on what these players need to do in order to overcome such issues in the future?
I personally think that the Indian biopharma industry should focus on competing on technical capability, qualities and compliance levels and superior services and products. Competing only on cost is not a long-term sustainable strategy.
What are the major challenges before Kemwell Biopharma?
Kemwell has built a young and dynamic team over the last five-to-six years and are continuing to grow the team substantially. Our biggest challenge is to attract and retain our team while continuously improving our service and quality.
What are your future plans? Where do you see Kemwell Biopharma in 2015?
Over the next few years, our goal would be to service our new customers for the biologics and fill-finish facilities as well as cater to the expanding needs of our R&D customers. We have recently hired Dr Ninad Deshpanday, who is based in the US to spearhead our pharmaceutical development activities. Under his leadership, we envision our R&D business to expand significantly. We are also actively looking at acquisitions of contract manufacturing facilities as well as contract research laboratories. By 2015, we would like to see Kemwell as a dominant player in the global biopharmaceutical outsourcing industry.