Pharmaceutical history of India and the rest of the world traces its roots back to Gupta Period circa 400 CE in medieval times and ancient civilizations like Chinese, Indus Mediterranean where traditional methods were employed to treat ailments and other purposes. However, the modern shape of the Pharmaceutical Industry is due to the developments caused by the Industrial Revolution. During Colonial times India was a source of raw materials for the industry, products were manufactured in the foreign nations and were exported back to India again. The first Pharmaceutical industry, Bengal Chemical was established in the early 20th century in Calcutta. At the near end of 20th century, Indian scientists like P C Ray, T K Gajjr, and A S Kotibhaskar laid the foundation for the modern pharmaceutical industry in India. Amidst this Shazam, the foundation of Century Pharma was laid in the district Panchmahal, Gujrat 1982 with a purpose of manufacturing Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients. Today, the Indian Pharmaceutical Industry ranks third in the world in volume and 14th in terms of value. The real growth was experienced only after the embracement of Neo-liberal reforms introduced in the last decade of the 20th century. With corporate office and Headquarters in Vadodara, Gujarat, the firm is led by a chemical engineer, Mr. Janak Sheth, an alumnus of IIT Delhi and the managing director of the firm.
The firm offers various kinds of services in addition to the manufacturing of Active Pharmaceuticals Ingredients undertaking long-term contracts for producing intermediates and development of new Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients as per the industry requirements. The firm pays a strong emphasis on rendering value added services to its customers at a reasonable cost. Century Pharmaceuticals Limited manufactures and develops all Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients in their own Research and Development facility. The firm is a 100 people strong family-owned firm and at present a closely held public limited company. Their factory is located in Halol near Vadodara.
Our editorial team spoke to Mr. Janak Sheth, Owner manager of Century Pharma and CEO of the Biotechnology research. Mr. Janak is an Industry veteran in the Pharmaceutical world with a total experience of 42+ years. He had a stint of an international assignment to execute a greenfield pharmaceutical project before starting his own.
Products, Services and Differentiating factors
Century is a customer-focused organization primarily involved with the manufacturing of API Products at ‘ reasonable prices. API Research, Animal Health, Biotechnology, Contract Manufacturing, Contract Research, Method Development, and Stability Studies are the other products and services rendered by Century Pharma. Their major revenues come mainly from the supply of active ingredients to the pharmaceutical finished product manufacturers.
Steps in biotechnology domain
The firm has not limited itself to the manufacturing of API products but has recognized the potential of Biotechnology in the Pharmaceutical Industry and enhancing the specificity and effectiveness of drugs, improvement of lifestyle quality and working on the unmet needs of the Industry. The firm is involved with the creation of significant biotechnology research capabilities in the area of targeted human therapeutic proteins. Currently, the firm’s R & D department is also involved in developing more API products. The firm jointly developed a Biotech drug discovery Research and Development program with an Israeli partner to develop Recombinant fusion proteins for the treatment and cure of Asthma and Mastocytosis. They are also working in the preclinical area, established the proof of concept and have undertaken toxicology studies and animal studies while in the process of filing NBE with the Indian government. They undertook the responsibility of supplying research grade biotechnology products in a cost-effective manner with assured confidentiality. Century Pharma’s interest domain extends to undertaking contract research and analytical development of Recombinant proteins for biotechnology companies. They are also engaged in stem cell research and its clinical trials.
Clients and Rivals
Their client list of more than 750 customers expands over more than 60 countries and include prestigious multinational names like Pfizer, Abbott, Teva multinationals, and large corporates like Cipla, Zydus Cadila, Macleods, and Glenmark as well as various MSME units. They are supplying Active Pharmaceuticals ingredients since last 4 decades. Some of their major customers operate in India and export their products to other countries. Our customers like Teva Pharmaceuticals, Jubilant, Glenmark, Hetero Drugs, Macleod, Abbott, FDC, Wallace Pharma, Intas Pharmaceuticals, Aristo pharmaceuticals and other Indian players in the Pharmaceutical industry regularly source their APIs from Century. Century have several competitors of various sizes in this field, but they take them as opportunities to improve the quality of their products and services while maintaining their market position.
The Milestones and Recognition
The firm has been earning profits continuously since its inception. The company is a green one making investments for a green future with lower emissions. Century have a WHO GMP quality manufacturing plant and have successfully achieved a prestigious position in the industry. Other honorable accolades are
*Fair Business Practices (Indian Council for Fair Businesses)
• Gold Medal for excellence in Business Practices (Switzerland)
• Excellence for Innovation, Quality, Productivity (IES, India)
• Gold Award from Lockheed Martin in Biotech technology
• FGI award for excellence “outstanding MSME” -2011 • Leaders of tomorrow by ET NOW — October 2013
• Conferred Certificate of Excellence for smart innovation in responsible business in a leading business Magazine —January 2015 • Quality Mark Trust Award — May 2015 • Century Pharma selected as fastest growing Pharmaceutical Company of 2016 in a leading business magazine • Winner of Quality Mark Trust Awards 2016 • GOLD certificate in ZED Certification from QCI India (ZEDQCI1211718) • Functional IBSC since 2007 • ‘Al’ SME company by Dun and Bradstreet • Excellence for Innovation, Quality, Productivity, Management (IES, India) • ISO 9001 for many years. ISO 14000 and EHS systems.
The Road Ahead
Or the future road, Century hopes to find a remedy for asthma and allergies and the future of medicines through stem cell therapies for various ailments. Century is also working on personalised cancer treatment with a targeted therapy technology. Currently, they are looking for a strategic partner to work with them for completing the trials of the research for asthma and look for out-licensing the technology once they get attractive valuations. They hope that the government approves stem cell therapies as an alternative therapy soon and hence they could commercialise their research and benefit from it. On Century’s revenue model, they hope to reach Rs 500 crores in five years from today.
The company is looking forward to capitalizing the opportunity created by Chinese companies who have not complied with the pollution norms and hence shut down or reduced production. This has been a boon for the company as several overseas customers have approved Century as their approved source which will bring good prospects for the company. Century is expanding it’s product and will start serving new markets.
Total Experience Century Pharmaceuticals Ltd 40 yrs 11 month
Owner Jan 2008 – Present (12 yrs 11 month) CEO of the Biotechnology research on Asthma and Allergies to develop a novel recombinant protein.
Managing Director Jan 1980 – Present (40 yrs 11 month ) Owner manager of Century Pharmaceuticals Ltd, manufacturers of Active Pharmaceutical Industries and into research of novel therapeutic proteins in India
Past President Exim Club 2002 – 2004 (2yrs)
Actively organised several programmes for exporters of our area.
Education Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi 1971 – 1976 Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi B. Tech Chemical 1971 – 1976
Eastleigh Secondary School High School 1965 – 1969