Pune, Aug 17 (IANS) The world's largest vaccine maker Serum Institute of India has bought 50 per cent stake in the Indian joint venture SCHOTT Kaisha from former co-owners Kairus Dadachanji and Shapoor Mistry at an undisclosed amount to expand its presence in pharmaceutical packaging segment.
SCHOTT Kaisha is a joint venture between Indian partners and Germany's specialty glass company SCHOTT AG. It is a leading Indian manufacturer of pharma packaging products such as vials, syringes, ampoules and cartridges used to package life-saving medications.
The acquisition will also help Serum to secure its supply of high-quality pharma packaging amid rising global demand.
Adar Poonawalla, CEO, Serum Institute of India, said: "Even the best medication can't reach the patient without the right packaging. Securing this supply chain is of strategic importance. SCHOTT is the perfect partner for us to do this because of their expertise and global network. As a longtime customer, we use their vials, ampoules and syringes to store our vaccines including COVISHIELD. Working closer together is in the best interest of global health."
SCHOTT is looking forward to the cooperation with the new partner. Frank Heinricht, CEO SCHOTT said: "As India has steadily established its position as a global pharmaceutical hub, we are delighted to strengthen our footprint within the Indian pharma supply chain. We are looking forward to strong impulses from this partnership. It is an excellent example of shifting towards new cooperation models, with greater synergies between pharma manufacturing and packaging production."
The joint venture will definitely continue to supply its customers in India and abroad as a reliable partner, said Eric L'Heureux, the new Managing Director and former longstanding Head of Operations.
"We have significantly increased our production capacity in India. Over the last three years we have invested roughly Rs 600 crore to set up two new plants in Umarsadi, Gujarat and Baddi, Himachal Pradesh, and to secure uninterrupted supply in our existing facilities during the pandemic."
As per the fresh joint venture agreement, both SCHOTT and Serum have committed to invest further in expanding its facilities in the country. Concrete plans in this regard will be announced as the partnership evolves.
Working together in the joint venture opens a new chapter in the successful partnership of Serum and SCHOTT. The companies have had a strong business relationship - and both have been playing a crucial role during the pandemic.
From the onset of the COVID-19 outbreak, Serum rose to the challenge of developing and/or manufacturing life-saving vaccines, such as COVISHIELD and COVOVAX. To this day, the company has filled and delivered hundreds of millions of doses to India and the world.
On the packaging end, SCHOTT has already exceeded its target to deliver vials for more than 2 billion vaccine doses through 2021. The company is providing glass vials globally to key vaccine manufacturers. The fact that SCHOTT has an integrated value chain, covering also the glass tubing the packaging is made of, further helped to secure the supply chain.