Indies Pharma pivots into new line of pharmaceuticals as a result of COVID-19

Pharmaceutical company Indies Pharma has pivoted into a new line of products as a result of COVID-19 which wreaked some havoc on the business.

The Montego Bay-based company has successfully diversified its product offerings, despite the ongoing challenges due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Indies Pharma, which is the first and sole local pharmaceutical distribution company to be listed on the Jamaica Stock Exchange, has launched a totally new line of products targeting the orthopaedic and joint rehabilitation segment of the medical profession.

Indies Pharma founded by the Indian-descent couple of Dr Guna Muppuri, chairman and CEO, and his wife, Vishnu Muppuri, executive director & chief operating officer (COO) was able to remain profitable in 2020 due to the relatively recession-proof pharmaceutical business. The chairman indicated that this gave the company the strength to register a steady growth with year-on-year increase in revenues as well as net profits.


Indies Pharma’s strategic business management recorded a sizable surge in its net profits which increased to $206.65 million, representing a 57.7 per cent jump in 2020 when compared to 2019. The biggest jump took place in comprehensive income which ended the year at $278.06 million, registering a 104.35 per cent increase over the prior year.

In commenting on the 2020 performance, Guna Muppuri recognised, “the support received from our customers and the valiant employees of Indies Pharma was second to none during this pandemic. Despite the challenges faced due to COVID-19 pandemic, during the 2019-20 financial year, Indies Pharma recorded a 5 per cent or $36.5 million increase in the gross revenues from $725.45 million in 2019 to $765.95 million in 2020.”


For her part, Vishnu Muppuri recognised that 2020 was a stormy year for the company. “2020 being a stormy year for the entire world, Indies Pharma was no exception to the havoc created by the pandemic. As the captains of the ship, we continued to demonstrate our ability to strategically handle the unprecedented risks surfaced during the pandemic crisis. We were able to pass the litmus test of the time by successfully steering the company,” she asserted.

She admitted that the COVID-19 crisis negatively impacted the investor mindset. This was exhibited in the stock price, pointing out that the stock price, which closed at $2.69 per share on October 30, 2020 compared to $3.16 per share on the October 31, 2019.

Despite COVID crises and escalating logistics cost and lead time delays, with stringent management in place, the company was able to cut its administrative and other expenses by $18.4 million last year, adding to the bottom-line growth. Indies Pharma also recorded significantly healthier asset base, which was boosted to $1.7 billion, representing a 128 per cent improvement over 2019.

This was aided by the acquisition of three acres of prime real estate along the North Coast Highway at Ironshore in Montego Bay, part of the so-called Elegant Corridor, where the company plans to build its new headquarters and a multipurpose complex, slated for completion within the next three years.