Report On“A Consumer Centric marketing approach in competitive landscape of Pharmaceuticals Industry

RAB 8 Barisal

Chapter-One: Introduction

The title of this report is “A Consumer Centric marketing approach in competitive landscape of Pharmaceuticals Industry: A Case study of Renata (Bangladesh) Limited.” The report gives an overall idea on the Pharmaceutical Division of Renata, one of the leading pharmaceutical companies of Bangladesh, operating business directly over many countries around the globe and its consumer centric activities to achieve its goal. The report focuses specifically on the consumer centric activities, more precisely on their popular kidney transplant drug Neural, of Renata in Bangladesh.

 Background of the Study

This report is prepared to fulfill the requirement of BBA Program of Department of Business administration, World University of Bangladesh. The internship program was carried out in the Marketing department of the pharmaceutical division of Renata Limited. As a part of the Internship requirement, the supervisors assigned the Report topic to Assess and (re)define the strategies of Consumer Centric activities and to measure the impact of Consumer Centrism on Renata which will help them to understand the effectiveness of the program and clear a path for implementing any new strategies for improving the performance.

 Objectives of the Study

The report entitled “A Consumer Centric Marketing Approach in Competitive landscape of Pharmaceuticals Industry: A Case study of Renata Limited” intends to explore the strategies used by one of the leading Pharmaceutical companies of Bangladesh for consumer centric activities and industry trends compared to that of Competitor. The objectives of this report can be explained as follow:

Broad Objectives:

The main purpose of this study is to depict an overall understanding of the company’s success at becoming a truly consumer centric organization. To find out how the process works, how marketing strategies are implemented and how the competition is faced.

Specific Objectives:

  • To analyze current trends in consumer centric activities of pharmaceutical companies of Bangladesh
  • To identify and analyze the strategies followed by the Renata to become a truly consumer centric organization
  • To identify the current strategies followed by the top competitors of Renata.
  • To analyze the consumer centric programs and their effectiveness.
  • To spot out the problems and weaknesses of the process and provide some guidelines to improve the programs.

Methodology

To do this study the “Observation” and “Informal Interview” methodology have been used for collecting data. To analyze data and to make report effective I have used descriptive research approach. I have practically observed most types of activities and programs of the process. Whenever any critical situation arose, I interviewed the concerned persons to clear that matter or to know more about it.

Source of Information:

 Primary Data:

Informal Interview:

A significant amount of information was collected through informal interviewing the Portfolio Managers (Marketing) and the Key Account Manager (Sales). All the officials were very much cooperative and provided in-depth knowledge about the working process

Active Participation:

Some information was collected from the active participation in different projects, assignments and programs during the internship period. It was very much educative and provided quality experience to deal with practical problems.

Observation:

Some information was collected on the basis of close observation of the processes and activities.

 Secondary Data:

The secondary data were collected from:

  • Both the Global and local websites of Renata and from its subsidiaries.
  • Bangladesh Pharmaceutical Index, (BPI).
  • IMS (Information of Medical Statistics),
  • Annual reports, (2008, 09, 10)
  • Newspapers and features in different e-magazines.

Limitation of the study

There are few limitations of this report for which the findings of the study may not represent the complete scenario of the positioning activities. The limitations are summarized below:

  1. The Marketing Department is one of the core units of the Pharma division of Renata. So most of the information is confidential and is not communicable publicly.
  2. Most of the tasks of this unit involve negotiating with the third parties (Clients) which require being an employee of Renata Pharmaceuticals. So, as an Internee, I could not participate in those activities directly, I just had the basic concepts from interviewing.
  3. Renata (Bangladesh) Limited has four core divisions working in Bangladesh i.e. Pharmaceuticals (branded and patented products), Sandoz (generic products), Consumer Health and Animal Health. As the Internship was performed in the Pharmaceutical division, the strategies of the other two divisions were not included in this report.
  4. Renata Pharma Division has different programs and strategies for different drugs. It was not possible to include all the activities in the report. This report is done on its kidney transplant drug Neural and similar drugs. So this report does not represent the whole scenario of the consumer centric activities.
  5. The sampling technique of this study is convenient sampling which is a non-probability sampling technique. Therefore, the samples considered here may not be representative of the defined population. As a result, the generalizability of the findings is quite low.
  6. In some cases, it is found that respondents are unable to remember the actual response. This inability has led to errors of omission, telescoping, and creation.

In the following parts of this report, various aspects of Renata (Bangladesh) Limited are illustrated and the full work flow of the Marketing department is described

Chapter- Two:Pharmaceuticals Industry

Pharmaceutical Industry Overview

The Pharmaceutical Industry is one of the highly sophisticated industries in Bangladesh, which has been exposed to rapid change and made a revolution in Bangladesh. These industries maintain a high technology and a world class standard in quality. Moreover, these industries have a major commitment to the society than any other industry as it is involved with the manufacturing of life saving drugs.

The pharmaceutical sector in Bangladesh is one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy. The $700 million sector with more than 231 manufacturers is continuously expanding with new products to new international destinations. The export value of pharmaceuticals is small but growing at 50 percent per year. Exports increased from $8.2 million in 2004 to $28.3 million in 2007, while export destinations climbed from 37 countries to 72 during the period.

The industry’s inception dates back to the 1950s when a few multinationals and local entrepreneurs started with manufacturing facilities in the former East Pakistan. By 1982, many top ranking multinationals established their manufacturing facilities in this part of the world. Among them Renata (Ciba-Geigy), Pfizer, Glaxo, Fisons, Squibb, Hoechst, ICI, May & Baker and Organon were Prominent.

Pharmaceutical industries in Bangladesh are gifted with unparalleled potential to grow in the days ahead as they enjoy a number of competitive advantages. The industry’s ability to comply with guidelines of quality assurance has put it on a solid base. Almost all companies are equipped with World Health Organization (WHO) Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards.

Bangladesh’s ability to face competition from developing countries like India, China, Brazil and Turkey in its export markets is due to Bangladesh pharmaceutical’s strict quality compliance. The most important indicator is the capability of the industry to achieve excellence and go beyond general international standards.

Bangladeshi pharmaceutical industries are expanding exportable items quite fast. Bangladesh is now exporting wide range of pharmaceutical products covering all major therapeutic classes and dosage forms like tablets, capsules and syrups. Bangladesh is also exporting high-tech specialized products like, HFA, inhalers, suppositories, hormones, steroids, oncology, immunosuppressant products, nasal sprays, injectable and IV infusions.

The sector enjoys sound footing due to the local pull of heavy demand for medicines by the country’s 150 million people. The industries are now producing quality medicines at an affordable price for millions of people in Bangladesh and has made Bangladesh almost self reliant in pharmaceutical products. Now, 97 percent of local demand for medicines is met by the sector.

The industry welcomed over 50 new factories in the last three years, of which about two dozen started marketing with an aggressive sales and promotion strategy during 2008. Out of 231 companies, 200 have their own manufacturing facilities of which five are multinationals.

The sector is active in API (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients). Twenty-one different companies now locally manufacture 41 API’s. However, compared to huge local demand, more API industries need to be set up. Pharmaceutical industries’ potential has multiplied with the recently approved API industrial park in Munshigonj at a cost of $30 billion. The APIPark will inject fresh momentum into the pharmaceutical industry. The country can save at least 70 percent of the amount and the park is expected to transform the industry as a major export earner with the potential to export products worth $750 million per year within the next five years.

Bangladesh can continue with the patented products up to 2015 as per trade related intellectual property rights (TRIPS). Pharmaceutical industries are now legally allowed to reverse engineer, manufacture and sell generic versions of on-patent pharmaceutical products for domestic consumption as well as for export to other LDCs. This has created a big opportunity to make Bangladesh as a new chemical entity.

It is estimated that over $250 million have been invested in this sector over the last couple years in terms of facility modernization as well as new facilities. Needless to mention that all of these investments were directed towards developing full cGMP compliant facilities which can meet stringent regulatory requirement of any country of the world.

This has opened up wider range of opportunities for the industry whereby these Bangladeshi companies can now export pharmaceutical products to any part of the globe capitalizing on the $600 billion plus global pharmaceutical market.

 Major Divisions

The total industry can broadly be classified into two categories. Theses are

  • Patent Medicines
  • Generic Medicines

Patent medicines are the products that are invented by the company, who have their own research team working on their own laboratories. These products are patented for many years to enjoy the monopoly market. After years of business the formulation is sold in the market so that others can go into mass production.

Generic medicines are the products that are produced in mass scale. These are marketed by several companies under different brand name, where the formulation of this product is almost same. Prices of the products are under this category are competitive. Bangladesh mainly concentrates on this category, as labor cost is one of the lowest in the world.

 Growth of the Industry

The growth potential of pharmaceutical industry is enormous. As urban population is increasing and people are getting educated, they are now more concerned about healthcare. So the demands of medical products are rising. In Bangladesh unhygienic conditions and poor health maintenance plans provide vast scope for the pharmaceutical firms to sell their products. On the other hand, the constant natural disasters provide opportunities to pharmaceutical companies to boost its sales. The trend and growth of this industry tends to be positive as the demand of medicines is rising.

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Figure: Growth of Pharmaceutical Industry of Bangladesh (Source: IMS)

The sale of pharmaceutical products have been growing significantly every year. During the year 2007 the pharmaceutical sales was Tk. 28,741,616,403 which has increased in the following year by remarkable margin. The total sale of pharmaceutical industry was Tk. 47,016,389,492 in 2011 and according to IMS, the total size of the market is 68 billion in 2010.

Export Potentials

Bangladesh has a great prospect in the global pharmaceutical market as a significant portion of the pharmaceutical products are exported every year. According to some industry people, Bangladesh is a country among 50 least developed countries that is self sufficient in pharmaceuticals. Over 200 small, medium and large local and multinational companies meet around 97 percent of the Tk6800 crore domestic market demands.

Some of these companies exported medicines worth nearly Tk300 crore in 2008, which were Tk200 crore and Tk150 crore in 2007 and 2006 respectively. The country now exports a wide range of pharmaceutical products covering all major therapeutic classes and dosage forms. High-tech specialized products like inhalers, suppositories, nasal sprays, indictable and infusions are also in the export basket.

Renata, Beximco, Square Pharmaceuticals, Aventis, Eskayef, Popular Pharmaceuticals, ACI and Acme are some of the leading exporters. Renata (Bangladesh) that exported drugs and medicines worth $ 15 million was the top ten exporter in 2007. However, export earning of the company was less $ 6.43 million less that that of the previous year. Renata (Bangladesh) Limited was also awarded with the National Export Trophy – Gold for the years 2002-2003 and 2003-2004.

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Source: www.thedailystar.net

Bangladesh now exports a wide range of pharmaceutical products to over 60 countries, including some developed markets.

Industry Players

In the emerging pharmaceutical industry of Bangladesh, many local and multinational companies are operating their business. There are around 268 pharmaceutical companies working in Bangladesh among which 230 manufacturing pharmaceutical companies are producing quality medicine. Following is the list of top ranked pharmaceutical companies:

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Table: List of top ranked pharmaceutical companies, 2009

Retail pharmaceutical sales has reachedTk7000 crore in 2010 and growth trend suggest that sales will reach tk10000 crore in 2011, riding on people’s health consciousness and booming hospitals and clinics. Annual turnover from retail drugs sales was Tk 4,701.63 crore in 2008, nearly 7 percent rise over the figure a year earlier, according to IMS (Information on Medical Statistics) data. The market size was Tk6800 crore in 2010.

Some 250 small, medium and large local and multinational companies are in operation in Bangladesh. Many started their business after 2000 sensing the growth potential in the local market. Of the 250 companies, top 10 companies — Square, Beximco, Eskayef, Incepta, Acme, ACI, Opsonin, Renata, Aristopharma and Drug International take up nearly 70 percent of the total market share, according to the IMS 2008 survey.

The survey reveals that Square Pharmaceuticals, the flagship company of business conglomerate Square Group, holds the leading position in the local market with Tk943 crore sales in 2008. The company alone holds a fifth of the total market share. Incepta, the second, sold drugs worth Tk354 crore in the local market last year. Beximco, Acme and Eskayef are the third, fourth and fifth respectively, with Tk333 crore, Tk247 crore and Tk218 crore in sales turnover.

The total sales volume of the pharmaceutical companies in the year 2008 was Tk. 47,016,389,492. Square pharmaceuticals alone held 20.06% of the sales revenue. Incepta and Beximco held the 2nd and 3rd position with 7.53% and 7.09% revenue share respectively. The top 10 companies acquire around 65% sales share of the industry. The other companies (more than 250) acquire the rest 34.82% revenue share.

Top Selling Brands

More than 250 pharmaceutical companies are selling around 9000 brands in Bangladesh. Square acquires the largest assortment of pharmaceutical products. The top selling brands in 2008 are  SECLO, NEOTACK, CIPROCIN, CEF-3, LEBAC ENTACYD PLUS  by Square; NEOCEPTIN R by Beximco; LOSECTIL by Eskayef, PANTONIX by Incepta Pharma, RANITID by Opsonin,

Square’s brand SECLO is the top selling brand of 2008 with sales revenue of Tk. 679,114,960. NEOTACK of the same company and Beximco’s NEOCEPTIN Ranked just after Seclo with sales revenue of Tk. 483,374,773 and Tk. 466,085,371 respective.

Most of the top brands are general medicines and are used massively by the people. So the sales for those brands are high.

Pharmaeutical Companies (2011) Competitive Scenario

The Pharmaceutical industry is mostly dominated by the local companies. The Top 10 selling companies are Bangladeshi, so competition mostly occurs among these companies. Square Pharmaceutical has a significant control and share of the market. Incepta Pharma, Beximco, ACME, Eskayef are some of the competing pharmaceutical companies. The following table provides a brief competitive summary of the pharma companies in Bangladesh in 2008.

 

Competitive Aspects of P

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Source: IMS 2008 (Information on Medical Statistics)

Multinational Pharmaceuticals

Few of the world’s leading multinational companies are working in Bangladesh for a long time. But due to high value of product, diminutive product line and strong local competition, they could not climb to the leading positions in Bangladesh. The world’s pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (UK), Sanofiaventis (Spain), Renata (German) , Eli Lilly operating their business here. The following table shows a comparative view of the performance of top multinational companies for patented and branded products:

Performance of the Multinational Pharmaceuticals (1st Quarter, 2011)

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Source: IMS 2008 (Information on Medical Statistics)

 CHAPTER THREE:Corporate Profile at a Glance

 Background of Renata Limited

The Company started its operations as Pfizer (Bangladesh) Limited in 1972. For the next two decades it continued as a highly successful subsidiary of Pfizer Corporation. However, by the late 1990s the focus of Pfizer had shifted from formulations to research. In accordance with this transformation, Pfizer divested its interests in many countries, including Bangladesh. Specifically, in 1993 Pfizer transferred the ownership of its Bangladesh operations to local shareholders, and the name of the company was changed to Renata Limited. No. of Employees: 2,623 employees.

Distributors and Affiliations:  Our Alliance-Partners are as follows: 

  • Novartis Vaccines (Rabipur, Vaxem HiB, and Agrippal)
  • BASF, Germany (Animal Nutrition Products)
  • InterVax, Canada (Meningococcal Vaccine)
  • Evans Vanodine, UK (Disinfectant)
  • Zinpro, USA (Metal Amino Acid Complexes)
  • Biomin Laboratories, Singapore (Mycotoxin Binders and Nutraceuticals)
  • Bomac Laboratories, New Zealand (Veterinary Products)

International Presence:

Afghanistan, Cambodia, Guyana, Jordan, Kenya, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Hong Kong, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, and United Kingdom

Investment:

  • 100% Shareholding in Renata Agro Industries Limited
  • 100% Shareholding in Purnava Limited

Bankers:

Agrani Bank, City Bank, Eastern Bank, HSBC, Mutual Trust Bank, Sonali Bank, Standard Chartered Bank

 Vision Statement

To establish Renata permanently among the best of innovative branded generic companies.

Mission statement

To provide maximum value to our customers, shareholders, colleagues, and communities where we live and work.

 Objectives of Renata Limited

  • Ensuring highest use of the professional workforce through enhancement of their aptitude and competency.
  •  Elevating the image of the Pharma at home and abroad by sustained expansion of its activities.
  •  Ensuring maintenance of increase market growth share, capital adequacy,  asset quality and highest through successful implementation

RENATA LIMITED

HOUSE # 450, ROAD # 31, NEW DOHS, MOHAKHALI, DHAKA-1206

ORGANIZATION CHART

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Pharmaceutical Products

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Chapter: Four:Consumer Centric Activities at Renata

Introduction

Consumer centricity is a strategy to fundamentally align a company’s products and services with the wants and needs of its most valuable consumers to maximize profits for the long term. Consumer centricity refers to the orientation of a company to the needs and behaviors’ of its consumers, rather than internal drivers (such as the quest for short term profit). Unfortunately, most companies are not practitioners of “consumer-centricity,” although they pay lip-service to the concept. A consumer centric approach assists an organization in building important relationships with internal and external consumers. Through this approach the consumer becomes the central platform from which the organization operates from and any decisions taken are viewed from the consumer’s point of view. Although such an approach sounds simple, it does not evolve in many organizations. Most organizations fail to understand their consumers and amend or fine tune their products/services in accordance to consumer needs.

Consumer Centric Design

What businesses today needs are consumer service standards. For an organization to be ‘market– led’ it must be ‘consumer – driven’. The only way to embed consumer service into the culture of a business is through a ‘management – led’ obsession for being ‘consumer – driven’. Businesses need to understand that consumers are not someone who is bolted onto a business at the end of a process. They are rather the vital core element without which the business would not exist. To survive and grow, a business needs to make profit. In order to make profit, the business should be able to find people who are willing to pay more for the products and services than they cost to avail them. Thus, it clearly means consumers are the profits of a business. This may look very simplistic, but its implications are meant to be understood. If all profits of a business come from consumers, then it makes sense to focus business on and around this source of profit.

Looking at this process, we can perceive that the employees of a company create and add value directly or indirectly to the product or the services so that the consumers are willing to pay the price they pay to avail them. We can thus state that if an employee is not serving a consumer directly, then he surely is serving someone who actually is serving the consumer directly. Directly or indirectly all employees in an organization is actually serving the consumer. This leads to the consumer centric organizational structure of an enterprise – which from a macro perspective should consist of two main layers: 1) Of People who server the consumers directly, and 2) Of People who serve people, who serve the consumers directly (i.e. people in layer 1).Untitled

            Figure: Structure of a consumer centric organization

Once we have the organizational structure of a consumer centric organization in place, what we next need to do is start estimating the lifetime worth of a consumer. The organization should estimate how much the consumer would spend on his purchases from the organization for thereto his life if he were to purchase the supplies that the organization so provides to the consumer, for example his lifetime purchases. A single purchase is the ‘Transaction Value’ and lifetime of purchases from the organization is the ‘Relationship Value’. Arriving at the Relationship Value is simple: from the Transaction Value we arrive to an estimated annual transaction value (total sales / total no. of consumers) figure and multiply the same with the potential lifetime of purchasing to arrive at the Relationship Value of a consumer.

Tools to become Consumer Centric

If a Company is as ked if your consumer is at the center of everything your business does, the answer would be “off course.” But the truth is that virtually every company today claims to be consumer-centric, but few really are. This is because many marketing executives look at consumer centricity as understanding and responding to the consumer’s needs. But to be able to truly consumer centric they need to dig bigger. They need to turn their perspective from inside-out to outside-in in order to get the depth and breadth of the insight they need to be truly consumer centric. Social media tools and technologies give marketers the unique ability to adopt the “outside in” perspective.

  •   Collaboration
  •  Listening
  •   Experience
  •   Action
  •   Relationship

Collaboration: Viewing markets as a place where goods are bought and sold is the concept of outdated. Today’s markets are places of conversation, connection and interaction. They are places where consumers seek information and share their ideas and opinions. Consumer-centric brands not only accept this shift, but embrace it by collaborating with their consumers to define, create and deliver value

Listening: Establishing a dialogue with consumers and listening to what they have to say helps marketers keep their business strategies fresh, current and compelling — and consumer-focused.

Experience: Experts agree that consumer centricity means not only meeting but exceeding consumer expectations. It’s about building real brand experiences with, not just for, consumers. A recent survey conducted by E-Consultancy for escape found, however, that many companies are not making the grade because they fail to provide a personalized consumer experience. Consumer-centric companies realize that it’s no longer the product or service that differentiates the brand; rather it’s the consumer’s experience with that product or service that sets the brand apart from the competition.

Action: To take action consumers need information: the right information. Yet, given the massive amounts of marketing messages they receive every day and the plethora of information available on the internet, getting the information they need to take action is akin to finding a needle in a haystack. That is why in the world of consumer centricity, relevance is key to enabling action. Marketers that provide consumers with meaningful content, and give them access to the tools they need to manage this information, will stand head-and-shoulders above the competition.

Relationship: When put all these ideas together, it is realized that building relationship is the core of consumer centricity. Marketing is

not about telling and selling. It’s about bringing relationship mindset to everything.

Consumer centricity at Renata

While most of the pharmaceutical companies are customer centric, Renata is more consumers centric. Renata is committed to creating value for all patients — including those who cannot afford treatment. Some of the key measures Renata is taking to put patients first:

v  Working with the World Health Organization to help eliminate leprosy by offering free treatment to patients worldwide.

v  Supplying malarial drug Courted without profit through multilateral institutions and public-private partnerships.

v  Developing medicines to combat tropical, infectious diseases such as dengue, tuberculosis and malaria through the Renata Institute for Tropical Diseases (NITD)

v  Researching vaccines for diseases of the developing world through the Renata Vaccines Institute for Global Health (NVGH).

Providing discounts and assistance programs to low-income patients in the developed world, including a patient assistance program for the cancer therapy Gleevec/Glivec — one of the most far-reaching patient-assistance programs ever

v  implemented on a global scale — ensuring access for all patients who cannot afford it.

Renata Bangladesh

Renata is the pioneer at consumer centric activities in Bangladesh. Out of 230 manufacturers in Bangladesh pharmaceutical industry, only Renata does awareness program as their consumer centric activity. Every year Renata spend 5% to 10% of their promotional activities in CC activities. Its CC work mainly centered around two types of activities-

–          Patient Meeting (PT)

–          Awareness Program (AP)

In 2010 Renata organized 12 patient meeting and an awareness program. In patient meetings, Renata arrange seminar program with the patients of a particular medicine which is chaired by a specialist doctor. In this programs doctor advises the patients about the disease, treatment, precautions, and latest medications. Besides patients meetings, Renata also arranges awareness program. On May 18, 2010 Renata arranged a awareness program in weel club, Gulsan-2. In this program, members of the club were briefed about osteoporosis and how it can be prevented.

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Besides these two types of programs, Renata also arrange for free testing and medication program around the Dhaka city on special days, for instance, on hypertension day or Diabetes day. In these programs Renata employs camp around the city and provide free information and offer some free tests or medicine. That way Renata collaborate with their consumers rather customers.

In my study, it was impossible to participate in all programs arranged by Renata. So I choose Neural medicine and conduct my study on its CC event.

Neural Overview

Neural® is an oral formulation of cyclosporine that immediately forms a micro emulsion in an aqueous environment. Cyclosporine, the active principle in Neural® (cyclosporine), is a cyclic polypeptide immunosuppressant agent consisting of 11 amino acids. It is produced as a metabolite by the fungus species Beauverianivea. Neural is produced in soft gelatin capsule and in oral solution. It is a lifelong drug for transplant patients.

Cyclosporine

Cyclosporine’s an immunosuppressant drug widely used in post-allergenic organ transplant to reduce the activity of the immune system, and therefore the risk of organ rejection. Initially isolated from the fungus Tolypoc ladiuminflatum isolated from a soil sample obtained by Sandoz scientists at Hardangervidda, Norway in 1969, cyclosporine is a cyclic no ribosomal peptide of 11 amino acids and contains a single D-amino acid, which are rarely encountered in nature.

Indication

Kidney, Liver, and Heart Transplantation: Neural® (cyclosporine) is indicated for the prophylaxis of organ rejection in kidney, liver, and heart allergenic transplants. Neural® (cyclosporine) has been used in combination with azathioprine and corticosteroids.

Rheumatoid Arthritis: Neural® (cyclosporine) is indicated for the treatment of patients with severe active, rheumatoid arthritis where the disease has not adequately responded to methotrexate. Neural® (cyclosporine) can be used in combination with methotrexate in rheumatoid arthritis patients who do not respond adequately to methotrexate alone.

Psoriasis: Neural(cyclosporine) is indicated for the treatment of adult, non immuno compromised patients with severe (i.e., extensive and/or disabling), recalcitrant, plaque psoriasis who have failed to respond to at least one systemic therapy (eg, PUVA, retinoid, or methotrexate) or in patients for whom other systemic therapies are contraindicated, or cannot be tolerated.

Neural in Bangladesh

 


Bangladesh is developing country with a population 142.3 million. Most of the people of Bangladesh are poor. They are deprived of modern medication and cannot afford expenses of transplantation. That’s why the total market is very small for Neural in Bangladesh. Currently there are 650 transplant patients in Bangladesh, of which 40% is done in Bangladesh and rest is abroad. Total market size of transplant patient in Bangladesh is 1.41 million $ with a growth rate of 18%.

 

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Neural is basically prescribed for kidney transplant patients. Renata manufactures 4 types of medicine for transplant patients in Bangladesh which completes in a package and Renata is the only company in Bangladesh offering this package.

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Chapter: Five:Analysis of Consumer Centric Activities of Renata.

Introduction

Every companies are aspiring to become consumer centric. Becoming consumer centric positions a firm above other firms in the eyes of the consumer. For too long, companies have focused internally with efforts toward total revenue, product profitability, operational efficiency, and organizational structure, on product or service attributes and on price. Instead companies must focus their efforts externally: customers or consumers. Because an organization cannot does business without its customers.

Consumer centricity helps the organization retaining its existing customer. And we know that retaining existing customer is easier than acquiring new customer. As a part of customer retention, Renata does many consumer centric programs. It brings them closer to the consumer, not the customer. By doing so they are creating a wave of loyal consumers. These programs are undoubtedly helpful if conducted in efficient manner. In my study I tried to find the efficiency of the programs.

In my study, I focused on the medicine Neural, which is a transplant medicine. In my study I tried to find the customer satisfaction, loyalty, expectation and evaluation of the company. There are a total of 309

transplant patients taking Neural. Out of which 71 consumers attended the program. So I selected 30 patients as my sample consumer. But 27 of the consumer returned the questionnaire with full answers. So, three other consumers were interviewed by me over the phone later.

General findings

This survey was conducted on the Patients of medicine Neural around the whole country. As the consumers are transplant patients they were accompanied by their caregiver. They are not included in the survey because they are not the actual consumer.  It was found that most of the patients are in the age group of 20-40 and 41-65. 87% of the patients live in Dhaka. So it can be concluded that most of the patients can support their own medication and does not need external support. Company’s activities should be centered on the Dhaka city but they should also encourage the consumers outside Dhaka to participate in the program. These findings on age and location is given in the following pages

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Consumer perception about the product

Neural is a very popular drug among the transplant patient. It is a lifelong drug and should be taken with some other medicine. Only Renata provides the complete package along with other medicine. That’s why consumer satisfaction level is quite good. As patients, consumers are unable to judge the performance of Neural. Besides, its immediate effect is not apparent immediately like other less expensive

and generic drugs. But still 73% of the respondents think that as a medicine, Neural is quite good, and the rest thinks Neural performs fairly. None of them considers Neural as excellent or bad drug. We have keep in mind that transplant is a very critical disease. So the performance of Neural can be measured by doctors more accurately. But even as patients they are quite satisfied.

Neural is a research product. As a result, its price is higher than the other drugs. In Bangladesh market such drugs have a very small market as most of the people cannot afford the drug.  Even the customers who can afford this drug think it is overpriced. Only 10 percent of the customer thought price of the Neural is fair. None thinks it is underpriced.

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Figure: Performance of Neural

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Even though price of Neural is quite high and it’s a lifelong drug, most of the consumers are highly loyal to the drug. This can be attributed to the consumer centric programs of Renata. Smuggled products are available in the market. So it is imperative for Renata to continue their consumer centric activities. Chart for buying preference is given below-

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Event evaluation

In my study I tried to find out the evaluation of the event. Consumers’ knowledge about the disease, its treatment and latest information and improvement in medicine is regarded as highly valuable. 93% of the respondents believe that after attending the program their knowledge has improved. The other 7% consists of doctors or patients who already participated in similar programs. Still they highly regard these programs and believe these kinds of events are necessary for the patients of such critical disease. Only 10% of the respondents evaluated the program as average and none said badly. All the others think of it as excellent or good. Charts are given below to get an overview of the respondents.

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Effectiveness of the program

As a pioneer in consumer centric activity in pharmaceutical industry, Renata has the luxury to get casual. But instead they continuously thrive to improve their activities to better understand their consumer. Consumers also respond kindly to the company. But the question is how the programs are contributing to the company itself? I tried to find out the answer on two variables for the simplicity of the study. That is logo of Renata and its positioning. Results are staggering. Only 10% of the respondents can remember the logo and 47% of the respondents either

vaguely remember or cannot remember at all. 23% of them did not notice any logo.

Renata tries to position themselves in mind of the consumer as friendly to customers. But when given with option to choose from 8 options, only 17 % of them think Renata as friendly. That doesn’t necessarily mean consumers think badly of Renata. In fact 40% thinks Renata as friendly organization. It simply means that consumer centric programs are not focusing on the company itself.

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Consumer satisfaction

The best way to determine the consumer satisfaction level was to find out whether they will participate in the similar programs in the future. In my study it was found that 90% of them will participate in the similar programs arranged by Renata. And 10% Is not sure. It signifies that the patients are satisfied with the program. This may be because only Renata arranges these kind of programs and there no way for them to judge the programs with the competitors. So they have no choice but to participate. But still the results are satisfactory and consumers are also satisfied.

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Chapter: Six:Summary of Findings

On the basis of exploration and analysis, the following findings can be drawn:

  • It was found that most of the patients are in the age group of 20-40 and 41-65. 87% of the patients live in Dhaka. So it can be concluded that most of the patients can support their own medication and does not need external support. Company’s activities should be centered on the Dhaka city but they should also encourage the consumers outside Dhaka to participate in the program.

Neural is a research product. As a result, its price is higher than the other drugs. In Bangladesh market such drugs have a very small

  • market as most of the people cannot afford the drug.  Even the customers who can afford this drug think it is overpriced. Only 10 percent of the customer thought price of the Neural is fair. None thinks it is under priced.
  • Renata tries to position themselves in the mind of the consumer as friendly to customers. But when given with option to choose from 8 options, only 17 % of them think Renata as friendly. That doesn’t necessarily mean consumers think badly of Renata. In fact 40% thinks Renata as friendly organization. It simply means that consumer centric programs are not focusing on the company itself.
  • The best way to determine the consumer satisfaction level was to find out whether they will participate in the similar programs in the future. In my study it was found that 90% of them will participate in the similar programs arranged by Renata. And 10% Is not sure. It signifies that the patients are satisfied with the program. This may be because only Renata arranges these kind of programs and there no way for them to judge the programs with the competitors. So they have no choice but to participate.
  • Discounts are only provided to wholesalers and some intermediaries. Consumers don’t get that kind of privileges. Not all consumers but loyal consumers have the right to get varieties discounts.

There are lack of promotional activities and budget at Renata. So consumers of the company are not well informed about the company. That’s way this creates low awareness and low focus of

  • the company which underweight the efficiency of the consumer centric programs.
  • In consumer centric programs, consumers are briefed only by employees of Reneta Ltd. But consumers do not think of them as credible source. There are always lack what employees briefed and what they believe. No specialist doctors are invited for that purpose.
  • To increase satisfactions, services, collaboration and information sharing with consumers, the management doesn’t take any initiatives to provide online services.              

Chapter 7 Seven:Conclusion & Recommendations

Conclusions:

Every company are aspiring to become consumer centric. Becoming consumer centric positions a firm above other firms in the eyes of the consumer. For too long, companies have focused internally with efforts toward total revenue, product profitability, operational efficiency, and organizational structure, on product or service attributes and on price. Instead companies must focus their efforts externally: customers or consumers. Because an organization cannot does business without its customers.

Consumer centricity helps the organization retaining its existing customer. And we know that retaining existing customer is easier than acquiring new customer. As a part of customer retention, Renata does many consumer centric programs. It brings them closer to the consumer, not the customer. By doing so they are creating a wave of loyal consumers. These programs are undoubtedly helpful if conducted in efficient manner. In my study I tried to find the efficiency of the programs

 Recommendation

Following are some of the recommendations which should be taken into account to improve   the effectiveness of the consumer centric programs of Renata.

  • Discount: Price of the medicines is very high. Most of the consumers suggested reducing price of the medicines. Discounts can be provided to the loyal customers. Besides Neural is a lifelong medicine. Other medicines are also long term. So to retain existing customer Renata should discount the product. Because we all know that retaining existing customer is easier than getting new customer.
  • Inclusion of specialist doctor: In these programs, consumers were briefed by the Renata employees. But consumers do not think of them as a credible source. So a specialist doctor should be invited in the program to increase the credibility of the program.
  • least 20 to 30 percent of the promotion budget should be allocated in consumer centric activities.
  • Online Support: Although internet is available throughout the country, Renata management did not take any initiative to provide online services to the consumers. Surely it will increase the consumer satisfaction and information sharing as well as collaboration with the customer will be easier.
  • Focus on the company: In my study it was found that, most of the consumers do not know much about the company. In fact logo of the company cannot be remembered by most of the consumers. So in these programs, management needs to focus more on the company and educate consumers about Renata so that they can recognize who they are buying from.
  • Improving quality: Although consumers are satisfied about the event, many of the complained that nothing new is coming recently. So I recommend including new features like games, competition, seminar, and Video lessons etc. programs to be included.

Frequency: In 2010 Renata arranged 11 consumer centric programs which are not enough to get effective result. So I recommend increasing the frequency of the programs and at

Exclusion of unnecessary activities: Some of the consumers complained about the inclusion of musical program, which is more fitted for the young and healthy people. What they mostly needed is the answers to their questions and queries rather

  • such musical program. Only after satisfying the consumers these kinds of programs should be included for the amusement.
  • Increasing time: Time of the whole event is not enough to satisfy the consumers and to conduct the event properly. More time should be allocated to for the betterment of the program.

 

The best conclusion that can be drawn from the study is that the consumers are quite satisfied with the product without proper knowledge about the company. Today’s competitive world is focusing more on brand building. But Renata lack in these aspect. Careful planning and more effort should be given to make these consumer centric programs more successful. At the same time Renata as a whole should be projected in front of the consumers. All the departments should work together for the advancement of the program.

I worked in Renata for three month as an intern. Their work environment and culture world class there’s no doubt about that. But I did not notice any brand building activity. In my opinion, they are one of the best pharmaceutical companies. But they should focus on making a name for the company which is very important in today’s world.

References:

  1. 1.       IMS book Bangladesh-2nd Q and 3rd Q 2008-2011
    1. QIMS-15 Dr.Ridwan Ullah Shahidi  15th edition,section -1
    2. William WELLS IMS(Bangladesh) book  Q2nd and Q3rd 2008-2011
        1. QIMP /Burnett-Advertising Principles &Practice 6th ed (Ch,3Page80)
        2. Phlip Kotler –Marketing Management
        3. www.pharma market in Bangladesh
      1. 4.        www. Renata Limited 
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