Drug major Sun Pharma plans to increase its field force in the domestic market by 10 per cent in the current fiscal in order to drive twin objectives of brand focus and geographical expansion, according to a senior company official. The Mumbai-based drug major, which is the fourth largest specialty generic drug maker in the world, currently employs around 11,000 Medical Representatives (MRs) and related staff in the country.
"The field force expansion done in FY21 has met with good success and considering the current market conditions, we will be undertaking a further expansion of about 10 per cent for our field force in FY23, driven by the twin objectives of brand focus and geographical expansion," Sun Pharmaceutical Industries CEO (India Business) Kirti Ganorkar said in an analyst call.
The company's India formulations sales for the full year FY22 stood at Rs 12,759 crore recording a strong 23 per cent growth over 2020-21 fiscal.
For the fourth quarter ended March 31, 2022, formulation revenues in India stood at Rs 3,096 crore, about 16 per cent higher over the January-March quarter of FY21.
Replying to a query, Ganorkar termed the intended increase in the field force as "more like an organic growth".
"We are expanding to geographies where we had a limited presence or no presence. So, it's nothing to say that we are looking at competition and then expanding. So, wherever we are seeing growth opportunities in the territories where we are expanding," he noted.
Besides, the company has a large product portfolio which it needs to "declutter", Ganorkar stated.
"That's why we are expanding in terms of the number of MRs as well as in terms of the number of business units, which are promoting products to the doctors. So, it's more of our strategy to grow in the future," he stated.
Ganorkar said the company has witnessed growth across most of the therapies where it has a presence.
"The growth was driven by a combination of factors like normalised market conditions and improved patient flow to doctor clinics, which led to higher growth in the chronic and semi-chronic segments. New products also contributed to the growth and we are seeing good momentum in products launched in the last 24 months," he noted.
In the fourth quarter the company introduced 11 new products in the Indian market.
Supported by more than 40 manufacturing facilities, Sun Pharma caters to more than 100 countries across the globe.
In FY22, the company's topline has crossed the USD 5 billion milestone while the adjusted net profit has gone past the USD 1 billion mark.
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