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Suven, with Cohance and more, wants to become a CDMO powerhouse: Annaswamy Vaidheesh, executive chairman


MUMBAI: Suven Pharmaceuticals, which announced the proposed merger of Cohance Lifesciences on Thursday, will be investing in research and development, commercial capabilities, and pursuing merger and acquisitions, as it aspires to be the “most admired” fully integrated global contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) services provider, the company’s top executive said.

“We want to be a diversified, end-to-end capability outsourcing partner, serving customers from development to commercial scale. Doing this reliably & consistently across a wide range of chemistries, that’s where the opportunity is,” said Annaswamy Vaidheesh, executive chairman of Suven in an interview to ET.

“Our business is really about partnering with the customers over the long term. Our success is inextricably linked with our customer’s as our business models are hard wired together,” Vaidheesh said. He added that he wants Suven to be the Lonzas of the world. Lonza-based in Basel, Switzerland is a global CDMO powerhouse.

Vaidheesh, a pharma veteran who previously led GSK India operations, and was roped in by Advent to lead Suven Pharma said a lot of energies were spent on getting the right talent, putting in systems and processes, project management, building commercial infrastructure, and investments on R&D to build technology and product capabilities.

Vaidheesh said the focus is on engaging more with customers and increasing requests for quotations (RFQs).

“Since we will be investing in R&D, manufacturing and commercial capabilities, we hope to serve our customers on newer molecules and connected more deeply with their supply chains. It’s a big growth opportunity,” Vaidheesh said.

Suven is setting up a large R&D centre in Hyderabad employing about 100 people.

Vaidheesh said it will be pursuing an inorganic route to acquire niche capabilities to win more business. “M&A is going to be very much part and parcel of our strategy, we will be looking for niche technologies, whether it’s India or outside,” Vaidheesh said. He added that it would take 18-24 months for all the efforts to pay off.

Suven Pharma, the listed entity and Cohance were promoted by the US-based private equity firm Advent International, that’s building a CDMO plus active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) platform in India through acquisitions and integration of CDMO and API businesses.


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