Biocon's Brand Booster
Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw,Executive Chairperson, Biocon
India's top biotech companies, including Serum Institute, Bharat Biotech and Biological E., were among the first ones globally to rope in research partners to find a vaccine following the Covid outbreak. Biocon, the country's leading biotech company, was missing from the list, though it was in the forefront in the national fight against the pandemic — through innovated diagnostic tests and supply of infection-controlling drugs such as Remdesivir and CytoSorb. Its re-purposed psoriasis drug, Itolizumab, was the first novel biologic therapy to be approved for emergency use, anywhere in the world, for treating patients with moderate-to-severe Covid complications. Many felt Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, executive chairperson of Biocon, and India's face of the biotech industry globally, missed the boat of Covid-19 opportunity. But Shaw, a recipient of Padma Shri (1989) and Padma Bhushan (2005), proved everybody wrong when she orchestrated a strategic long-term collaboration with Serum Institute Life Sciences (SILS). For 15% stake in SILS for $700 million, Biocon Biologics, a subsidiary of Biocon, will have access to 100 million doses of vaccines annually for 15 years and commercialisation rights of SILS' vaccine portfolio for global markets. Biocon will jointly research with Serum for vaccines and drugs. Biocon's revenue rose 14% year-on-year to ₹7,360 crore in FY21, and the company recorded a net profit of ₹754 crore and an EBITDA of ₹1,907 crore.