EMCOMED, its development strategy
As part of its development strategy, the Medicines Marketing and Distribution Company (EMCOMED) is committed to increasing its logistics services marketing, encouraging business with the Cuban business system and investment with foreign capital.
This important issue was addressed in a meeting with CubaPLUS Magazine by Eng. Aida Torrens Beltrán, Chief Specialist of the Business and Foreign Investment Group, a department created in that Cuban organization with the purpose of generating new business opportunities and collaboration projects, from the business organization itself to provide the necessary assistance for its development.
“When we prepare a business proposal, it is not enough to have an idea, it needs structuring and a plan needs developing that projects its development and possible execution. However, this task is complex, causing many to get lost in the attempt,” explained Torrens Beltrán.
As one of the main functions of the group, the gestation of business, with an impact for our organization, and due to the limited resources with which the organization operates, we have established selection criteria for the projects that are candidates to join our work system, she continued.
Among the most important criteria in this selection process, she added, are the activity to be carried out, its technical, economic, financial and market viability, its correspondence with the needs of our organization, which belongs to the BioCubaFarma Group, and the benefits for our country.
The group’s advice on legal, accounting-financial, design and image, market and marketing strategies, accompany the process at all times, while the experience, teamwork, commitment and love for our industries distinguish the work of our specialists, whose results we celebrate as a collective, she said.
Development of a business or collaboration project based on services “The main challenge in this process is the preparing of the market study and later the technical-economic feasibility of the proposal focused on services. Traditionally in our country it is easy to obtain the statistical data necessary to prepare studies related to products or obtaining them, but when we talk about services the problem becomes much more complex, even for the consulting firms that help us to carry out our work,” she said.
“In the case of market studies for logistics services,” she added, “we have had to develop them ourselves. This has also become a strength for our work, as we have come to fully understand the current state of these, their challenges and their future prospects.”
The design of a business or collaborative project proposal carried out by our group goes through several steps that range from clearly defining the proposal’s objective, based on identifying a need in the organization’s bank of problems; research where we collect as much data as possible; selection of the methodology to be used; planning and creation of a schedule; identification of available resources; preparation of a communication plan for the group and all the areas involved in the proposal; constant monitoring and evaluation of the proposal’s development until the recycling or reuse of these if it is repeated.
Foreign investment, a crucial commitment for development Even in the midst of a challenging and unusual scenario, the largest of the Antilles persists in the decisive role of attracting foreign capital in order to promote the development of various sectors considered strategic, in which the biopharmaceutical sector stands out, made up of two industries: Biotechnology and Pharmaceuticals.
Despite the forecast of a drop of over 40 percent in global investment flows and the tightening of the U.S. blockade against the Caribbean nation, the efforts in the Cuban pharmaceutical sector are being redoubled.
Cuba today proposes eight possibilities in its Portfolio of Business Opportunities with Foreign Investment for the current period, among which the Biopharmaceutical Logistics Operator project in the Mariel Special Development Zone, sponsored by EMCOMED, stands out. It consists of the creation of a specialized logistics services platform for the biopharmaceutical industries, considered essential for boosting the development of the sector in the country and contributing to preserving the health and quality of life of our people, Torrens Beltrán said.
International studies support the importance of having logistics service providers in all supply chains, characterized by having variety and capacity of transportation, knowledge and contacts in the region, possibilities of storage facilities and logistics experience in the country.
It is essential for the logistics provider to be certified for the transport and storage of healthcare products, to have resilience and adaptability to manage any crisis, transparency and data-driven knowledge, enabling information to be provided on the status of shipments and monitoring variables that may impact supply.
Therefore, the logistics operator must be experienced in crisis management to quickly scale up its capabilities and ensure continuous high quality services that add value to the supply chain.
Various international reports highlight the growth forecast of the size of the global pharmaceutical and biotech drug logistics market, which reached a value of nearly $90.30 billion in 2020, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.1% since 2015.
This market is expected to reach $102.89 billion by 2025 and $130.03 billion by 2030. North America was the largest region in the global pharmaceutical logistics market, accounting for 47.9% of the total in 2020. It was followed by Asia-Pacific, Western Europe and then the other regions. In the future, the fastest growing regions in the pharmaceutical and biological medicines logistics market are expected to be South America and Africa, where growth will be at CAGRs of 6.0% and 4.6%, respectively.
Growing demand for temperature-sensitive biopharmaceuticals, such as COVID-19 vaccines and blood plasma products, is driving the development of biopharmaceutical logistics.
Many of these products are temperature-controlled and a small fluctuation in that parameter, due to a power failure, can cause them irreparable damage. This gives rise to the need for transportation and storage facilities capable of preserving the cold chain required for these products.
For this reason, there is an increasing demand for logistics services by the manufacturers of these drugs, which is expected to continue to grow. In terms of logistics, biopharmaceuticals are more demanding than other commodities and require precise temperature control throughout the supply chain, from the manufacturer to the patient.
Soon, we aspire to concrete, with a foreign partner, the Biopharmaceutical Logistics Operator project in our sector, characterized by having products and services with high added value, in which all the potential that our nation has created in human capital formation can be fully exploited, using the possibilities of the Mariel Special Development Zone for promoting logistics, whose support would also contribute to the progress of our country, the specialist finally said.