Biocon eyes market share expansion in developed, emerging markets: Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

expects both recovery and growth in the ongoing fiscal year as the biotech firm looks to expand market share for its biosimilars in the United States and other developed countries, founder and chairperson Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw told ET.

India’s largest biotech company is expecting several drug approvals this year, besides rising demand for its research services, she said.

“We are looking at a digital transformation initiative. We are actually looking at (increasing) market share in developed markets as well as emerging markets,” Mazumdar-Shaw said.

“Trastuzumab (monoclonal antibody used to treat breast and stomach cancers) is another big opportunity we are looking at, not just in the US and Europe, but it is a very large global opportunity with growth potential for us,” she said.

Biocon expects more opportunities due to the granting of the interchangeability label for insulin glargine (Semglee) in the US, and the country’s FDA coming down on American biopharmaceuticals firm Amgen for claiming that it Onpro on-body injector was a superior product to pegfilgrastim, a medicine which stimulates healthy White Blood Cells in the bone marrow.

The Bengaluru-headquartered company is moving past the disruptions caused by Covid-19 as it had vaccinated 90% of its workforce.

“Operationally, we will be in a better shape with no further disruptions,” she said, adding that it was prepared to handle the new waves of the pandemic.

At the height of the previous Covid wave, over 500 employees were infected, while the company also faced challenges in oxygen supply and raw materials needed for production. Biocon plans to develop a hybrid work model for employees by allowing them to visit the office in rotation.

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Meanwhile, Biocon reported a net profit of Rs 84 crore for the first quarter, compared to Rs 149 crore in the same period last year due to a share of losses at its US subsidiary Bicara Theraupatics.

Revenue grew by 6% to Rs 1,808 crore, led by sale of biosimilars and demand for research services. Before accounting for the loss at Bicara, a personal therapeutics company, Biocon’s profit stood at Rs 142 crore.

“Business sentiments are favourable for biosimilars, generics and research services. Globally, we see a strong demand for biosimilars and generic drugs, given the growing emphasis on affordable drug pricing,” Shaw said while announcing the results.

“Biocon has seen a strong 41% year on year growth in research services and a steady growth in its biosimilars business, reporting revenue of Rs 758 crore, up 10% over the same period last year, and 14% over the preceding quarter,” she added.

The muted growth was due to Covid-19 related operational challenges at Biocon’s API facilities in Bengaluru and Hyderabad.

The company will explore external venture funding to support clinical development for long-term value creation, she said.

Biocon also said Mazumdar-Shaw’s husband, John Shaw, would step down from the company’s Board due to health reasons.



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