Aspen Pharmacare in South Africa

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Sep 11, 2012


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Aspen Pharmacare in South Africa

The need for antiretroviral treatment in South Africa is acute. Without significant changes, current projections indicate that 3.5 million South Africans will die of AIDS-related infections by 2010. In 1997, Stephen Saad sold his shares in the Covan Zurich pharmaceutical company and, along with two others, founded Aspen Pharmacare with $7 million. Its goal: to build a major pharmaceutical manufacturer capable of supplying the South African market with brand name, generic and over-the-counter medicines at affordable prices. Aspen is now the largest producer of tablets and capsules in Africa, recording a net profit of $75 million in 2005. The case describes how Aspen’s business model and innovations have responded to a challenging environment, complicated by humanitarian, governmental and legal demands.

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