Betadine manufacturer now ready to build S$100-M hub in Singapore

TUAS, Singapore—Global pharmaceutical company Mundipharma is set to construct a S$100-million research and development (R&D) manufacturing and distribution hub in Singapore to cater to the demand for medical brand Betadine in emerging markets and in Asia.

During the groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, Mundipharma President for Asia Pacific, Latin America, Middle East and Africa Raman Singh said the facility will be the first Betadine consumer-health hub that will feature all R&D, manufacturing and distribution of the product.

“[This facility] will be the first manufacturing site for Betadine in emerging markets and in Asia, the first global research and development hub for Betadine and consumer products and regional supply-chain hub for Betadine in Asia,” Singh said.

The facility is expected to reach 7,300 square meters and will have the capacity to produce 2 billion units of Betadine, all of which will supply the requirement for the health-care product in Asia.

“We got a capacity of 2 billion units, but we are initially planning for 1 billion units. [We project] that 70 percent of the total Betadine requirement will come from Asia and all of that is expected to come out from our hub in Singapore,” Singh said.

Singh said Asia is seen as a growing market, as pharmaceutical-market growth in the region is expected to reach 15 percent.

“As more and more people are coming into the middle class, more and more people are realizing that health care is becoming a concern and a priority. Also for the government, as the countries are getting richer and their economies improve, they will see health care become the top of their agenda, wanting to invest more than they have in the past,” he said.

Singh said Singapore was chosen for this facility to make Betadine more accessible and affordable to people in the region. “This facility is a further confirmation we want to make our product more relevant in this market and price it at a point where people can afford it. That’s when we decided we should set up our own manufacturing facility, rather than relying on imports from Europe, which we are doing now.”

The company official said the new facility will be a big part of Mundipharma’s aspiration to grow Betadine into a $1-billion brand from the current $400 million.

“We have an aspiration of making Betadine a billion-dollar brand [by 2025]. And we cannot make this if you do not have innovation. Most of that is going to come out of Singapore,” he said. Aside from this, Singh said the company’s strategy focuses more on inorganic growth. He said in the last four years, the company has done 36 business development deals and acquired 20 assets.

“The Philippines is a very attractive market. The economy has really bounced back. We see a lot of stability in the Philippines and strong growth in the health-care market,” Singh said.

Health care in the Philippines is growing at about 12 percent, while Mundipharma’s arm in the Philippines has grown close to 26 percent, he said.

He said the company has made acquisitions and signed partnerships with local counterparts and just recently launched a new feminine hygiene product called “Fresh Bliss.”

“The Philippines is the first market to launch this product. So it’s like a center of excellence in a way that if we create a new product, the Philippines becomes the first test market,” he said.


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