Pharma packaging major Schott Kaisha embarks on major expansion drive

Growing demand for pharma packaging

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Rishad Dadachanji, director of Schott Kaisha speaking during the Mumbai roadshow.

Leading pharmaceutical packaging company Schott Kaisha is embarking on a major expansion drive which will increase its capability to manufacture vials, pre-filled syringes and sterile solutions. The company’s expansion plans include new sites in Gujarat and North India along with expansion and upgradation of existing plants in Daman and Jambusar in Gujarat.

“With our investment in the new module in Jambusar, we are now at complete capacity. Our production lines are half-filled at the moment, and we will be able to fill the complete module by the end of this year. This will give us an additional 600 million vials. Similarly, our new site around the Gujarat-Daman border will cater to pre-filled syringes and sterile solutions and will give us an additional 211 million syringes and 212 million cartridges at complete capacity,” Rishad Dadachanji, director of Schott Kaisha told Packaging South Asia.

Schott Kaisha is an Indo-German joint venture and a leading supplier for the pharmaceutical industry offering solutions for the entire range of small volume tubular glass parenteral packaging including ampoules, vials, cartridges and sterile pre-fillable glass syringes. The company was established in 1991 as a manufacturer of pharmaceutical containers made of neutral glass in India under the name Kaisha Manufacturers Pvt. Ltd. In 2008, it started cooperation with German technology group Schott.

Schott Kaisha’s expansion into North India, according to Dadachanji, is driven from the volume growth in the market, and thus it makes sense to have a closer proximity to clients there. “Our increased combined capacity in various parts of the country will cater to the growing demand of ampoules, vials, syringes, cartridges and sterile portfolio. The company is focussing on catering to the domestic market first, with a current supply to export ratio of 75:25,” he adds.

The whole expansion plan will entail an investment of Rs 500 crores between 2018 and 2020.

Strong demand growth in Indian pharmaceutical industry

A few years ago, the Indian pharmaceutical industry went through a slowdown due to USFDA-related issues. However, the approvals are being granted much quicker now, and hence many local players are filing their Abbreviated New Drug Applications (ANDA) for exports rapidly. In fact, according to India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), India supplies over 50% of global demand for various vaccines, 40% of generic demand in the U.S. and 25% in Europe.

“This has been a key driving factor for the rising demand of quality primary packaging containers, for which Schott Kaisha is a preferred partner for all key pharma players in the country. Growth can also be attributed to the introduction of innovative drugs and formulations such as biosimilars, cancer drugs and vaccines that requires a highly controlled packaging which does not react with the complex characteristics of the medicine,” says Dadachanji.

New products

As a leading packaging solution provider for the pharmaceutical industry, Schott Kaisha has been constantly coming up with new and innovative solutions. One of the most recent launches was of syriQ BioPure, Schott’s iQ platform, which is a hugely customizable glass pre-fillable staked-needle syringe (PFS). It is specifically designed to keep sensitive drugs stable over shelf life and shorten time to market while making administration more convenient for patients.

Schott Kaisha has also announced its customized offerings of tamper-evident syringe caps, sycure (that confirms in one glance if the drug package has been tampered with), 16×10 plunger stopper nest solutions (which enable customers to increase the output of their machine by filling and stoppering a larger number of syringes at a time) and bulk sterile vials with no glass-to-glass contact trays.

A very successful pan-India roadshow

In a first-ever industry initiative, Schott Kaisha successfully concluded its 5-city roadshow, bringing together industry experts, R&D specialists, business and sales leaders for discussions on the latest technological advancements and best practices that lead to drug safety. The company hosted more than 500 customers, partners and prospects under one roof in Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad.

Held over two weeks, the events gave participants a clear understanding on the importance of conversion process in tubular glass manufacturing, and showcased Schott Kaisha’s upcoming product portfolio, tailormade design and development capabilities.

“One of the key takeaways for me has been that our clients, who are closest to the end users, are keen to adopt the latest technological advancements in their manufacturing value chain to cater to the evolving requirements of the industry. The market is growing, and so is the competition. Hence, players are paying even more attention on improvising their solutions, even if that means customizing our combined offerings,” says Dadachanji.