WERTEKS is a pharmaceutical company from St. Petersburg that produces pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, dietary supplements and medical devices. About 80 of more than 130 medicines manufactured by the company are on the List of Vital and Essential Drugs. The main directions of WERTEKS production are: cardiology, dermatology, allergology, gynecology, neurology, dentistry, psychiatry and many others. The company is actively and continuously expanding its product range. Based on an exclusive interview for Manufacturing Journal with CEO Georgy Pobelyanskiy.
The Company was incorporated in late 1999 and then began a preparatory stage for obtaining a license for the production of medicines: development and registration of the products, organization of the production area, selection of qualified employees etc. In 2003, WERTEKS received the first license to produce medicines that became the starting point of entering the market as the pharmaceutical manufacturer and the key to its development. However, the most important project for WERTEKS during its existence became the construction of a full-cycle pharmaceutical plant in St. Petersburg, launched at the end of August 2015. This is the first stage of innovative industrial complex construction located on a land site in Novoorlovskaya territory of the special economic zone, naimed Saint-Petersburg. Of course, one of the main reasons to be proud is the construction of a large pharmaceutical plant in just two years – says CEO Georgy Pobelyanskiy. – For us, it is comparable to Neil Armstrong’s first landing on the moon. Paraphrasing his words, that’s one small step for mankind, one giant leap for WERTEKS. The plant occupy over 20 000 square meters. This is one of the largest pharmaceutical plants, not only in Russia but also in Europe. Investments in the project amounted to over 2.2 billion rubles. WERTEKS intends to use part of the new platform productive power for contract manufacturing. The company’s production abilities allow to provide full technological cycle of the production from design to product packaging in various forms: tablets, capsules, ointments, creams, sprays, and others. WERTEKS is considering the possibility of effective cooperation with companies that are interested in creation and development of medicine production in Russia and plans to manufacture products under own brands. The company offers its partners not only productive forces, but also long-term and reliable partnership, that is particularly important because of import substitution policy, which advocates replacing foreign imports with domestic production to support Russian manufacturers. Your irreplaceable Russian partner is a principle of operation of the company at all levels of cooperation. The strategic potential of the company lays in production capacity in accordance with the necessary requirements for the organization of production, its storage and quality; development original products in the field of cardiology and neurology and a unique intellectual capital.
Main products and production technologies
Company’s product portfolio consists of about 200 medicines, cosmetics, dietary supplements and medical devices. More than 130 of them - medicines. WERTEKS uses the most modern equipment for the production of medicines. Due to the special equipment of product lines WERTEKS can simultaneously produce a variety of medicines. Bin technology allows to combine multiple loading of intermediate product at the stage of mass mixing, making it possible to produce a greater volume of medicines. Application of lifting columns on the operations of the intermediate product preparation minimizes the share of manual labor. The company has R&D Center - the Department of product portfolio management, which includes the science service. The department employs eight Ph.D. of chemical, pharmaceutical and engineering sciences. In total company hires 12 Ph.D. of chemical, technical, medical, biological, pharmaceutical science. Over 60% of employees have a higher education. Strong own cosmetic brands in pharmacy segment established themselves as successful and popular through the years. A number of these products are recommended by medical community representatives. For example, series against hair loss that stimulate hair growth ALERANA®: shampoos, hair serums, conditioners, eyelash and eyebrow growth stimulators, and other products. The company also has a dental line Asepta® aimed at the prevention of periodontal disease: tooth pastes, including those for children, oral rinses, gingival gels, including protective innovative gel released in Russia, developed by Belgian company Oystershell NV. The effectiveness of many of the company products is confirmed by clinical research trials. Another famous Russian brand is La-Kry®. It releases non-hormonal products for skin prone to irritation, and hair. Company also produces intimate hygiene gels for women under the brand Ginokomfort® and products to improve legs venous tone under the brand Normaven®. Each of these series includes dietary supplements with a corresponding effect: an increase of hair thickness and growth, teeth and gums strengthening, prevention of avitaminosis – multivitamin gel for children and others.
High quality guarantee
Product quality assurance must be the basis of the work and reputation of each pharmaceutical manufacturer, as he is responsible for people’s health. Otherwise he will not be able to sell his products, – says Georgy Pobelyanskiy. – For WERTEKS the quality of the products is a top priority, and our moral obligation to the doctors and patients. To this end, the company introduced rules of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP). In 2015, WERTEKS became one of the first pharmaceutical companies in Russia, which received a certificate of compliance of its sites for the production of medicines to GMP requirements – “Rules of organization of production and quality control of medicines” from Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation. And now the company is preparing to introduce ISO 9001:2008 (GOST ISO 9001-2011) Quality Management System. The new pharmaceutical plant has all the conditions to ensure product quality: clean manufacturing facilities, special ventilation and air conditioning, as well as water treatment system specifically designed for the pharmaceutical industry. The warehouse complex allows to provide appropriate conditions of storage of raw materials and finished products. The necessary specifications of engineering systems and climatic parameters of premises are controlled online using the automated control system. Technical equipment (114 units) purchased from the world’s leading manufacturers allowed to implement high standards of complex technological processes management, including the ability to provide the software. According to procedures requirements only trained and healthy staff could start work on the production. Raw materials, intermediate and finished products are subject to quality control and are permitted for production, transition to the next operation or sale only on the basis of the positive results of product testing, delivered by quality control laboratory. And the permission to sell medicines could be provided by only one leader – an authorized person, quality director – after a thorough analysis of all the documentation that accompanies the release of each specific product series, and data quality control.
Achievements and further development plans
WERTEKS plans to continue to develop the product range, increase output and create new products. Given the fact that it is planned to create a single market of medicines circulation in the framework of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), in the long term we are interested in the markets of which it consists to promote all the products, including drugs, – says Georgy Pobelyanskiy. – Besides Russia it’s Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. In the future our plans, perhaps, will be even more ambitious. Major investments will be directed towards the implementation of the second phase of innovative industrial complex in a special economic zone “St. Petersburg”, which will be designed in 2016. Over the past few years, WERTEKS is in the top 10 most influential local pharmaceutical manufacturers (source - RNS Pharma). Also for several years ALERANA® brand recognized to be a leader in the anti-hair loss segment by sales, according to the Russian research companies. In addition, following the tradition, the company was recognized an attractive employer, according to one of the leading recruitment portals in Russia. The company’s mission directly reflects the objective of its work: We improve the quality of life and health of millions of people, producing high-quality, efficient, safe and affordable products. I am convinced that business shouldn’t be built only for the sake of profit. The basis should be a noble goal that is more important than the commercial component. The main purpose of our company, in addition to its success and development is work for the benefit of society: consumers, partners, employees – says CEO. – But, of course, the company will not operate at a loss. As once said the legendary Japanese billionaire Konosuke Matsushita, who built his business from scratch: If we cannot make a profit, that means we are committing a sort of crime against society. We take society’s capital, we take their people, we take their materials, yet without a good profit, we are using precious resources that could be better used elsewhere.And I really like such an approach to the business. Employees (more than 900 people), with their professionalism and intelligence, continuous development of the company’s operational efficiency, innovation and ethics in cooperation considered to be among core values of WERTEKS. The company is proud that the result of her work allows to maintain the health and life quality of millions of people, and thus helps them to be happy, thanks to the products developed and produced by WERTEKS. I use our products myself and recommend it to friends – says Georgy Pobelyanskiy. – I am proud that the company’s work makes significant contribution to the development of the pharmaceutical industry and science. As they say – actions instead of words! And it’s a constant credo of WERTEKS.