Sector News

India’s Lupin announces CEO pick for new subsidiary as it moves into the CDMO arena

June 22, 2024
Life sciences

From vitamin maker to pharmaceutical specialist and now contract manufacturer, India’s Lupin is embarking on a new phase of its corporate journey.

Lupin on Monday unveiled its new subsidiary, Lupin Manufacturing Solutions, which is poised to work on the development, production and sale of active pharmaceutical ingredients. The company is now starting to build out its contract development and manufacturing operations business, Lupin explained in a press release.

At the same time, Lupin announced Abdelaziz Toumi will take the reins as CEO of the newly formed unit. Toumi’s track record includes stints at Bayer, Merck, Catalent, Lonza and KBI Biopharma. He will be based in Switzerland and spend a considerable amount of time in India, Lupin said.

“We are delighted to welcome Abdel to our team,” Lupin’s managing director, Nilesh Gupta, said in a statement. “He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in the API CDMO space and will be instrumental in establishing LMS as a trusted and preferred partner for our global customers.”

Lupin got its start back in 1968 as an Indian vitamin manufacturer, thanks to 5,000 rupees founder Desh Bandhu Gupta borrowed from his wife. The company’s first manufacturing plant churned out iron and folic acid tablets for India’s government as part of a countrywide program aimed at improving maternal and childhood health.

Soon after, Lupin started producing drugs for tuberculosis, according to its website.

Meanwhile, Lupin has made headlines in recent years courtesy of recalls and FDA citations.

That said, the company recently cleared an FDA inspection of its plant in Nagpur, India, with zero observations.

Prior to that, Lupin revealed it had signed a license and supply agreement with Thailand’s OLIC to market Fuji Pharma’s pregnancy prevention drug Nextstellis in Vietnam and the Philippines.

And, last summer, Lupin became the first company to score approval in the U.S. for its generic version of Boehringer Ingelheim’s blockbuster chronic obstructive pulmonary disease treatment Spiriva HandiHaler.

The approval marked the first in the U.S. for a dry powder inhaler from India, Lupin’s CEO, Vinita Gupta, said at the time.

Lupin’s manufacturing footprint spans 15 facilities across India, the U.S., Brazil and Mexico, with the company claiming its “pe-eminence as a leader in formulations and APIs.” Nevertheless, the company has run into production shortfalls before.

Last summer, the company recalled two batches of birth control pills on the fact that they may not have been effective at preventing pregnancy. At the time, Lupin said testing on one of the lots of Tydemy tablets found low levels of ascorbic acid and high levels of a “known impurity.” Prior to that, Lupin in Nov. of 2022 received another in a series of Form 483 citations from the FDA, with the regulatory wrist slap focusing on the company’s API plant in Manideep, India.

By Fraiser Kansteiner


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