‘It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.’ Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution is being played out in India’s pharma retail industry as large retail chains move into the territory of smaller mostly family managed chemists. This issue’s cover story profiles the changing face of India’s pharma retail trade. Urban Indian consumers have already seen their friendly nukkad dawai ki dukaan morphing into a swank pharmacy or migrating to one of the numerous malls mushrooming across India’s skyline. This rationalisation promises to do away with extra layers (and margins), while reducing spurious drug trade. While this is no doubt a sound business proposition, one hopes that benefits filter down to rural areas as this is where access to medicine is still very poor.
Course correction required?
Over the years, Indian pharmacos progressively increased focus on exports and have raked in profits. However the rising Rupee may soon force a re-look of marketing strategy in favour of domestic growth. As our market cover points out, the smart ones have always believed in the balanced approach.
Still on the theme of change, our research interview profiles translational medicine, a science which is re-writing the rules of drug research. We wind up talking about change at the micro-level. Pharma Life describes how pharmacos encourage employees to ‘think out of the box’ and manage change through innovation. After all, all change and innovation starts with a single spark.