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Submitted by
Vishal Singhal
Registration No: 11802159
In partial fulfillment of Summer Internship for the award of the degree of

Master of Business administration (MBA)

School of Business
Phagwara, Punjab

Introduction to pharmaceuticals

The Pharmaceutical Industry develops, produces, and markets drugs licensed for use as
medications. For this they have a well-equipped R&D department. Pharmaceutical
companies are allowed to deal in generic and/or brand medications and medical devices.
They are subject to a variety of laws and regulations of the government regarding the
patenting, testing, pricing and ensuring safety and efficacy and marketing of drugs

Historical Background of Pharmaceutical Industry

The origin of the earlier drugstores goes back to the middle Ages. The first known
drugstore was opened by Arabian pharmacists in Baghdad in 754 and it gave way to
many more, which soon started operating throughout the medieval Islamic world and
eventually medieval Europe. Many of the drugstores in Europe and North America had
gradually developed into larger pharmaceutical companies by the 19th century.

The late 19th and early 20th centuries gave birth too many of today's major
pharmaceutical companies. The discoveries of the 1920s and 1930s, such as insulin and
penicillin, became the mass-manufactured and distributed drug of that time. Switzerland,
Germany and Italy were among the front runners in these industries, with the UK, US,
Belgium and the Netherlands following them. In 1910s the pharmaceutical production
began in India with the establishment of Bengal Chemical and Pharmaceutical Works
in Calcutta and Alembic Chemicals in Baroda privately. With British initiatives
pharmaceutical research institutes for tropical diseases like King Institute of
Preventive Medicine, Chennai (in Tamil Nadu), Central Drug Research Institute,
Kasauli (in Himachal Pradesh), Pastures Institute, Coonoor (in Tamil Nadu), etc.
was setup.

In its early stages the industry received a setbacks during the post-World War II
period, as a result of which a new therapeutic developments in the Western
countries had started. Natural elimination of the older drugs gave way to the newer drug
like sulpha, antibiotics, vitamin, hormones, antihistamine etc. This resulted in the
elimination of local drugs using indigenous materials and now the industry was forced
to import bulk drugs meant for processing them into formulations and for selling
in the domestic market.

The Stages of Growth

The Indian pharmaceutical industry had four stages of growth.

In the first stage during 1950s–60s, the industry was largely dominated by foreign
companies and it was dependent on imported bulk drugs . Foreign firms, were
enjoying a strong patent protection under the Patent and Design Act 1911, this had
an adverse effect on the local production. Given the inadequate capabilities of the
domestic sector to start local production of bulk drugs and hesitation of foreign
firms to do so, the government decided to intervene by starting public sector
enterprises. This led to the establishment of the Indian Drugs and Pharmaceuticals
Ltd. (IDPL) plants at Rishikesh and Hyderabad in 1961 and the Hindustan Antibiotics at
Pimpri, Pune, in 1954 to manufacture penicillin. The starting of the public sector
enterprises has been an important feature in the evolution of the pharmaceutical industry
and has revolutionary importance in the history of the Indian Pharmaceutical company.
As these public sector industries took initiatives in producing bulk drugs indigenously
and motivated the private domestic sector.

The second growth stage of the industry took place in the year 1970s. The enactment of
the Indian Patent Act (IPA) 1970 and the New Drug Policy (NDP) 1978 during
this stage are important milestones in the history of the pharmaceutical industry in India.
The IPA reduced the scope of patenting to only processes and non-pharmaceutical
products. It also reduced the period from sixteen to seven years. This brought in a number
of changes in patent system. Compulsory licensing after three years of the patent was also
recognized. The enactment of the process patent significantly lead to the local
technological development via adaptation, reverse engineering and new process
development. As there are many ways to produce a drug, the domestic companies were
able to find out ways of producing less costly and quality drugs for supply in the
domestic market. This led to the growth and development of the domestic firms in
the market. Pressure was mounted on foreign companies to locally manufacture bulk
drugs and that too from the basic stage. Firms producing high technology drugs were
allowed foreign ownership up to 74 per cent under the Foreign Exchange
Regulation Act (FERA) 1973 under it only those Foreign firms that are simply
producing formulations based on imported bulk drugs were required to start local
production from the basic stage within a two year period. Otherwise were required to
reduce their foreign ownership holding to 40 per cent. New foreign investments were to
be permitted only when the production involves high technology bulk drugs and
formulations thereon. The soft patent policy and policies of the government against
foreign firms affected the industry and leaded strong growth impetus to the domestic
sector during 1980s.

In the third stage of its development, near self-sufficiency was achieved in the technology
and production of domestic enterprises based on large scale reverse engineering and
process innovation. This was for production of bulk drugs and have developed
manufacturing technique for all forms like tablets, capsules, liquids, orals and
Injectables and so on. This gave a competitive edge to the domestic firms in the
national and international markets. In 1991, domestic firms have emerged large in
the market having about 70 and 80 per cent of the market shares in the case of
bulk drugs and formulations respectively (Lanjouw, 1998). The industry with more
than 30 per cent of its production being exported to foreign markets made it one of
the most export oriented industry of India (Kumar and Pradhan, 2003). In terms of
trade, the deficits which was experienced in the seventies was replaced by trade
surpluses during 1980s.
The growth momentum which started in the third stage continued in the fourth stage
of the evolution of the industry during 1990s. The production and formulations of
bulk drugs rose new heights and the share of bulk drugs in total production from a
low of 11 per cent in the year 1955- 56 has gone up to 19 per cent in the year 1999-
2000 . This stage has also witnessed dramatic changes in the strategic policy of the
pharmaceutical industry. Under this the licensing requirement for drugs was abolished,
100 per cent foreign investment was permitted under automatic route, and minimum
restrictions were imposed on price control. After the three Amendments carried out in
March 1999, June 2002 and April 2005 on the Patent Act 1970 , the Indian patent
regime was brought in harmony with the WTO agreement related to Trade Related
Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs). The third and the final one, known as the
Patents (Amendment) Act, 2005 came into force on 4th April 2005 and it also
introduced product patents in drugs, food and chemicals sectors. The term of patenting
was increased to 20 years period. With these changes in the patent policy regime in
the 1990s, started a new era in the history of Indian pharmaceutical industry where
the trade patterns and industrial performance was determined by the various features
such as free imports, foreign investment and technological superiority. The Indian
pharmaceutical industry is looking at this era of globalization as both an opportunity and
a challenge. (Pharmaceutical Policy 2002, Press Information Bureau Releases, February
15, 2002.

Drug discovery is the process by which the required drugs are discovered or designed. In
the past most drugs have been discovered either by isolating the active ingredient from
traditional remedies or by serendipitous discovery. A great deal of early-stage drug
discovery has traditionally been carried out by universities and research institutions. All
this requires constant innovation and research by either the traditional or modern
methods, or a combination of both.

Drug development refers to activities undertaken after a compound is identified as a

potential drug in order to establish its suitability as a medication. Objectives of drug
development are to determine appropriate Formulation and Dosing, as well as to establish
safety. Research in these areas generally includes a combination of in vitro studies, in
vivo studies, and clinical trials. The amount of capital required for late stage development
has made it a historical strength of the larger pharmaceutical companies.

Often, large multinational corporations contribute in a broad range of drug discovery and
development, manufacturing and quality control, marketing, sales, and distribution. On
the other hand, smaller organizations lay emphasis on a specific aspect such as
discovering drug candidates or developing formulations. Often, collaborative agreements
between research organizations and large pharmaceutical companies are formed to
discover any probability of new drug.


The Indian Pharmaceutical industry is the second-largest in the world by volume and is
leading the manufacturing sector of India. The Indian bio-tech industry has achieved a
growth rate of 17 percent and has gained revenues of Rs.137 billion ($3 billion) in the
2009-10. Bio-Pharmaceutical was the biggest contributor generating 60 percent of the
industry's growth at Rs.8, 829 crore, followed by bio-services at Rs.2, 639 crore and bio-
agriculture at Rs.1, 936 crore. The first pharmaceutical company was Bengal Chemicals
and Pharmaceutical Works, which still exists today as one of 5 government-owned drug
manufacturers, in Calcutta in the year 1930. For the next 60 years, most of the drugs in
India were imported by multinationals either in fully formulated or bulk form. The
government started to encourage the growth of drug manufacturing by Indian companies
in the early 1960s, and due to the Patents Act in 1970, the industry got an opportunity to
grow. This patent act removed composition patents from food and drugs, and though it
kept process patents, these were shortened to a period of five to seven years. The lack of
patent protection made the Indian market undesirable to the multinational companies who
had dominated the market, and while they streamed out, Indian companies started to take
their places. The multinationals were market leaders at that time because of their superior
technology. As a result of this, they had gained expertise in reverse-engineering new
processes for manufacturing drugs at low costs. Although some of the larger companies
have taken small steps towards drug innovation, the industry as a whole has been
following this business model until the present.

PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY: the annual turnover of the Indian Pharmaceutical

industry is estimated to be about US$ 21.73 billion (Rs. 1, 04, 209 crore) during the year
2009-10. The share of export of Drugs, Pharmaceutical & Fine Chemicals is around Rs.
42,154 crore. The industry now produces bulk drugs belonging to all major therapeutics
groups requiring complicated manufacturing process and also has developed good GMP;
in fact the prices of bulk drugs have also grown in last three years. Growth in Bulk drug
Prices in India is shown in below given table:

Patents and generics

Depending on a number of considerations, a company may apply for and be granted a

patent for the drug, or the process of producing the drug, granting exclusivity rights
typically for about 20 years. However, for seeking permission for marketing and selling
drugs a company requires government only after rigorous study and testing, which takes
10 to 15 years on average. Patent protection helps the owner of the patent to regain the
costs of research and development due to high profit margins of the branded drug. In a
situation where the patent protection for the drug expires, a generic drug is usually
developed and sold by the company. The reason behind this is that the development and
approval of generics is not that costly, which enables them to be sold at a much lower
price than the patent drug. To get him launched in the generic market usually the owner
of the branded drug introduces it before the patent expires. Companies failed to launch a
new product to replace the older one necessitated restructuring exercises. The British
colonial masters, enacted in 1911 were still practiced at the time of Indian independence.
This secured the Indian market for the British industry. Prior to 1970, the domestic
production was very less, the major player at this time were the multinational companies
with a share of 85 percent. Section 83 of the Patents Act 1970 states "that patents are
granted to encourage inventions and to secure that the inventions are worked in India on a
commercial scale and to the fullest extent and not to enable patentees to enjoy a
monopoly for the importation". At the turn of the century, the share of multinationals had
declined to 40 percent of the India’s market, including a major share of local processing
by multinationals. The "architect" of the patent law of 1970, S. Vedaraman, then director
of the Indian Patent Office, summarizes the spirit of the law as follows: "We are not
against patents. And we are prepared to pay decent license fees. But we in India cannot
afford monopolies." Since then, the product patent for pharmaceutics was removed in
India, with the exception of production processes which may be patented for seven years.
In addition, the law allowed for compulsory licenses may be granted to the patent holder
by the state, in the case of a patent holder not granting voluntary licenses on fair
conditions. India had a large section of well-qualified experts who made good use of the
new opportunities and contributed to the success story of the pharmaceutical industry.
Through patents was only developed in the last 30 years in many other industrial
countries. To imitate foreign drugs, such as Aspirin at the end of the 19th century the
enactment of a patent law was fought by many industries especially Swiss pharmaceutical
industries. The Product patents for medical drugs started only in 1978 in Switzerland.

Those countries which exports technology earns profit from patent protection, which
protect them from low-cost competition. Most of the developing countries who imports
technology want to avoid patent protection for gaining technical innovations as freely and
at low cost. The economic development of Japan, Korea and Taiwan was possible due to
the absence of patents, which proved very beneficial to them. The Cipla chief objective
has for decades been to promote the principle of relying on one’s own strength. "For
India, this means striving for a high degree of self-sufficiency in vital areas of health and
nutrition, and for our business practice, it means aiming for the fulfillment of the needs of
the Indian population, the use of indigenous raw materials and of local personnel", says
Cipla managing director Y.K. Hamied. All this and with Cipla technical superiority
promoted the Indian Council for Medical Research suggested to Cipla in 1990 that the
AIDS drug Zidovudine be locally manufactured. With limited financial support from the
state government, the market of this drug was small. With a yearly turnover of
approximately US$ 2 million for AIDS drugs in India, 80 percent is shared by Cipla.


It is often said that the success story of the pharmaceutical sector has no cyclical factor
attached to it; it is growing and growing very fast. Usually it is believed that the demand
for drugs is likely to vary over the period whether the economy is experiencing a
downturn or in an upturn. True in some sense as the demand for drugs especially the life
saving drugs comes under the category of necessity commodities which have an inelastic
demand. Here are the various perspectives of the Indian pharma industry by carrying out
a SWOT analysis (Strength, Weakness, Opportunity, and Threat). Before we start the
analysis let’s look a little back into the industry’s performance. The Industry is a largely
fragmented and highly competitive with a large number of players having interest in it.
The SWOT analysis of the industry reveals the position of the Indian pharma industry in
respect to its internal and external environment.


1. Indian with a population of over a billion is a largely untapped market. In fact the use
of modern medicine is less than 30% in India. The per capita expenditure on health care
in India is US$ 93 while the same for countries like Brazil is US$ 453 and Malaysia

2. The rapid growth of middle class in India has contributed in the changing lifestyles in
urban areas. This forms the very bases of a huge market for drugs, in which the share of
the domestic producers is very less.

3. The cost of production of the Indian manufacturers is the lowest cost among the drug
producers in the world. With a huge labor force, India can manufacture drugs 40% to
50% cheaper than rest of the world. In some cases, this cost is as low as 90%.

4. With excellence in chemistry and process reengineering skills the Indian

pharmaceutical industry gives an added competitive advantage to the Indian companies.
This also helps the industry to develop techniques which are cost effective.


1. The pricing regulation is proving to be the biggest obstacle in way of rapid growth of
the industry. Over a period of time, this regulation has reduced the pricing ability of
companies. The NPPA (National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority) is the regulating
authority of the pharmaceutical companies. Its job is to decide the various pricing
parameters, sets prices of different drugs etc, all these leads to lower profitability of the
companies. The companies, which produces at lower cost are at advantage while those
whose cost of production is high are left with no other, option that to stop production or
bear losses.

2. There is lack of product patenting in the Indian pharmaceutical sector which prevents
global pharmaceutical companies to introduce new drugs in the country and also
discourages innovation and drug discovery.

3. Indian pharmaceutical market is very less exploited in the world. The growth of the
domestic producers and drugs consumption has been slow. Due to this the big Indian
Manufacturers have to still depend on exports. To put things in to perspective, India
accounts for almost 16% of the world population while the total size of industry is just
1% of the global pharma industry.

4. Due to very low barriers to entry, Indian pharmaceutical industry is facing competition
with about 300 large manufacturing units and about 18,000 small units spread across the
country. The industry witnesses price competition, which reduces the growth of the
industry in value term. To put things in perspective, in the year 2003, the industry
actually grew by 10.4% but due to price competition, the growth in value terms was 8.2%
(prices actually declined by 2.2%)


1. The transformation into a product patent based regime is likely to give a stimulus to the
industry. It will not only encourage research and developmental activities of the domestic
companies but will also increase the profitability of MNC pharmaceutical companies.
This transformation may also lead to consolidation of the fragmented pharmaceutical
industry. Very small players might not be able to survive the stiff competition and may be
taken over by the giants.

2. Large number of drugs was not patented in Europe and in the US between 2005 to
2009 which gave big opportunity to the Indian companies to take over the European and
US markets. Indian producers have the competitive advantage in producing the generic
drugs, because there cost of production is the lowest in the world as it is easily available
in India.

3. The expansion of the health care industry due to opening up of health insurance sector
and the expected growth in per capita income also is a major health indicator. The
Pharmaceutical industry being an integral part of it had an opportunity to grow at the
same time.

4. Being the lowest cost producer combined with FDA approved plants; Indian
companies may be a global outsourcing hub for pharmaceutical products.


1. The political instability in India is a major concern for the pharmaceutical industry, as
patent act might be changed by the new government and the new provisions might not be
in the interest of the pharmaceutical industry.

2. Threats from other the low cost countries like China and Israel may be a threat to the
pharmaceutical industry. However, India enjoys the reputation of providing better the
quality drug, than to China.

3. Another Short term threat for pharmaceutical industry is the uncertainty regarding the
changing policies of the Government.

Profile of the company

Thor Drugs- Thor Drugs Pvt. Ltd is a vertically integrated pharmaceutical company with
established research, and marketing capabilities across multi-therapeutic domains. We
successfully leverage our penchant for science and technology to create niche products
leading to attractive growth.

Vision- “Enriching Lives through Innovation in Healthcare”

Mission- “Discovery to Delivery”


Innovation drives growth. Sensitive to market needs and committed to innovation, here
at Thor Drugs Pvt. Ltd we focus on niche product manufacturing platforms, combining
cutting-edge technology and the best minds in the business.

Valuing People

We value individuality and creativity. Our unique “People and Process Paradigm” helps
achieve the twin objective – emphasis on regulatory and compliance on one hand, while
fostering – innovation and creativity on the other.

Peak Performance

We seek to build a sustainable organizational eco-system where one is constantly

motivated to attain new heights and empowered to discover new avenues for growth.


Quality has always been a strong part of Thor Drugs Pvt. Ltd.’s proposition. Our quality
initiative covers all aspects including product quality, operational quality, environmental
quality and finally a good quality of life for our people.

Harmony with Society

We seek to balance environmental impact and economic interest in all our business
activities. Committed to the development of the society, culture and economy, we
dutifully observe laws; demonstrate high ethical standards and Endeavour to preserve the

Corporate Governance

Our Approach

Ever since our inception, we committed ourselves to the highest standards of corporate
governance. We believe that a robust corporate governance policy drives healthy business
growth and reinforces vibrant markets, besides serving an important instrument of related
people. Governance also provides an appropriate framework for the Board and the
Management to set corporate objectives to enhance company value.

Core Values

Our corporate governance is defined by clear, established values, standards of business

conduct and code of ethics.

Business Ethics

Our business code reaffirms our adherence to core values and serves as a practical guide
to everyday work life. Constantly accommodating new legal and regulatory
developments, this code is a valuable resource in assisting employees with decision
making to ensure that business is conducted with integrity. This business code also helps
in preventing, detecting, reporting and addressing any allegation of misconduct and
violations of law.


Adhering to the principle of fair disclosure, we regularly provide information on the

company’s position and significant changes in business activities to all our Strategic


We accord the highest emphasis to quality and it is given as much attention as innovation
and value creation. A fully computerized quality control system monitors operations
round-the-clock thereby ensuring highest standards of quality.


At Thor Drugs Pvt Ltd, maintaining highest levels of quality helps us deliver excellence
in everything we do reflecting not only in robust growth but also in personal development
and enhanced management abilities.

Our world-class quality products and facilities, regulatory and compliance systems
conform to international standards. In fact, we have been the youngest pharmaceutical
company in India to receive the coveted GMP Certification.

Safety Excellence

Safety First

At Thor Drugs Pvt. Ltd, safety is a part of the corporate culture. This includes
infrastructural, employee, environmental and community safety. Starting with the
employee induction program, training programs on various aspects of operational safety
are periodically conducted. In association with a global expert on safety procedures, a
number of initiatives have been designed to ensure that all manufacturing processes and
systems are executed in the safest manner. These include:

• Use of high-end technologies to recycle discharge and make it toxic free through a
series of processes thereby leading to zero discharge manufacturing.

• Three-tier safety committees to monitor safety initiatives, standard operating

procedures (SOPs), process and working standards for F&D and manufacturing units.

• Round-the-clock medical care and safety training for all employees.

• Use of sophisticated equipment to monitor air quality inside plants.

Safety vision

To become a world-class, safety-driven pharmaceutical organization by conducting our

business processes and operations with commitment to the highest standards of safety,
health and environment.

Safety goal

Our safety vision is inspired by a succinctly stated goal – 'Zero Incident'.

We believe the goal of a zero incident workplace is achievable by developing and
maintaining management systems that allow us to control risk by ensuring engineering
controls and administrative controls. Our ultimate goal is to have zero accidents, zero
injuries and zero fatalities – leading to zero incidents.


Most organizations are mostly driven by strategies. We are also driven by values.

• Corporate Social Responsibility

• Respect for the Individual

• Excellence

• Innovation

• Value for patients

Line of Products

Brand Name CONTAINTS Dosage Form

AKTIV-D Cholecalciferol 60000 IU Units Sachet SACHET
AKTIV-D Cholecalciferol 60000 IU Units Chewable Tablets Tablets
AKTIV-D-INJ Cholecalciferol (60000 IU) 15MG Injection
ANDROPIL Dehydroepiandosterone 25mg Capsule
RACAL Calcium Citrate1000mg + Calcitriol 0.25mg Tablets
Calcium Carbonate1250mg eqv to Elemental Calcium
RACAL-C Tablets
Calcium Citrate Maleate (CCM) 250mg + Vitamin D3
RACAL-D Tablets
1000 IU
Lysine, Betacarotene, Vit B6, B12, Niacianamide,
VANTAB Biotin, Folic Acide, Vit D, with VANADIUM,Capsule
THORPRIDE Glimipride 2mg + Metformin 500mg SR Tablets TABLETS
Dehydroepiandrosterone Micronised 75mg SR Tablets TABLETS
Dehydroepiandrosterone Micronised 75mg SR Tablets TABLETS
L-Carnitine 500 mg + Co-Emzyme Q10 60 mg
Lycopene 10% 2.5mg + Zinc Sulphate 12.5 mg
Alpha Lipoic Acid 100 mg + Folic Acid 1.5 mg + Vit.
VANTAB- B6 3 mg + Methylcobalamin 1500 mcg
FORTE D-Biotin 100mcg + Chromium 60 mcg + Selenium 65
mcg + Inositol 2 mg + Zinc Sul. 15 mg
Medical Representative

Pharmaceutical sales representatives are salespeople employed by pharmaceutical

companies to persuade doctors to prescribe their drugs to patients. Drug companies in the
United States spend ~$5 billion annually sending representatives to doctors to provide
product information, answer questions on product use, and deliver product samples.

Companies maintain this provides an educational service by keeping doctors updated on

the latest changes in medical science. Critics point to a systematic use of gifts and
personal information to befriend doctors to influence their drug prescriptions. In the
United Kingdom representatives are governed by a strict code of conduct from the
Association of British Pharmaceutical Industries (ABPI). No gifts are allowed.
Companies are fined and held in breach if they use the tactics described in this

Doctors can receive small gifts, such as free dinners, event or travel tickets, clocks, free
drug samples and swag. Controversial inducements include jobs offers for the drug
company, consulting / speaking fees, and all-expense-paid travel to resorts and exotic
locations where attendance is limited or not mandatory.

Pharmaceutical Representative is a trade journal featuring common sales tactics such as

how to close a tough sale by flattering a stubborn doctor. Along with flattery, the
attractiveness of sales reps has been noted, with a trend of former cheerleaders entering
the field. Researchers note; "seduction appeared to be a deliberate industry strategy", and
in informal survey by a doctor found that 12 out of 13 women sales reps said they had
been sexually harassed by doctors.

Me-too drugs

Sales reps push new "follow on" or "me-too" drugs with free samples that are more
expensive than existing generic drugs, such as Nexium which costs three times as much
as its predecessor Prilosec, with no evidence of improved efficacy. With beta-blockers
and statins, me-too drugs have improved results, and increased competition while
lowering prices. As me-too drugs are similar but new, their side effects can be unknown
and not well understood. Pharmaceutical marketing / reps assert a me-too drug may work
better than another, but they "don’t test their me-too drugs in people who have not done
well with an earlier drug of the same class."


In 1990, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) passed laws banning "gifts of
substantial value" of drug companies to doctors, however this has changed the gifts from
objects to meals and travel.
In 2006, New Hampshire forbid the sale of prescription data to commercial entities.

Encountering ill-informed reps at his practice Dr. Dan Foster, a West Virginia surgeon
and lawmaker, introduced a bill to require reps to have science degrees. While it did not
pass, it led to a disclosure of minimum hiring requirements.


Role of medical representative is to create demand for an existing product or launch new
product ensuring availability at retailers and stockiest.

The role of Medical Representative is very challenging. They represent the total company
in a given territory. They have to work hard from morning to midnight at different
hospitals, clinics, doctor’s chambers, pharmacies etc. They have to meet with different
types of people doctors, nurses, pharmacy owners, clinic’s managers and even sometimes
with general people. They have to achieve their target by generating prescriptions. They
need to earn knowledge regarding the human body and microbiology. They need to be
master in product knowledge, selling skills, communication skills, problem-solving skills,
and time management to become a good Medical Representative.

Medical Representatives are the building blocks of a company. They form the platform of
the company in front of customers and share the vision, promote the products of the
company and achieves the given objectives, in turn, which get converted into revenue for
the company.

Medical representatives are the key point of contact between pharmaceutical and medical
companies and health care professionals, promoting product awareness, answering
queries, providing advice and introducing new products. Excellent sales skills are a key
requirement for medical representatives.

Launching new products in the market

Sales Achievement

Customer Support and Customer Service

Pharma Product Promotion

Market Feedback about the product

Company Representation

Record Keeping and Reporting


A typical day may involve one-on-one meetings with doctors, pharmacists or nurses in
their offices or places of business to monitor their supply of drugs and to inform them of
forthcoming changes. The representative will introduce them to new products from his
company. In the afternoon, he might visit hospitals to meet with doctors on staff to
persuade them to purchase his products.


It costs millions to produce a drug and to sell them in this competitive pharmaceutical
business world. The pharma industries need people who can sell their products to the
doctors, pharmacists, and chemists. These companies recruit the medical representatives
(Sales Representative) for the purpose of introducing their new products to the doctors,
pharmacists, chemists or other healthcare professionals who regularly prescribe
medicines to the patients.

Medical representatives specialize in one area and make the health professionals
prescribe the particular product of their company. Their job is to promote the existing
medicine to the doctors, pharmacists, and chemists. They discuss the clinical usage,
dosages, etc. with the pharmacists and doctors.

Medical representatives (MR) are the people who perform key communication between
the medical professionals and the drug manufacturing companies. Their responsibilities
also include the promotion of the company’s products to the GPs and doctors in the
hospitals. For this purpose, they have to do a one-to-one communication or meetings with
those medical professionals.

Qualifying Exam

Those who wish to be a medical representative (MR) should acquire a bachelor’s degree
in a related field. The specialization in pharmacy, business or healthcare is preferred.
Those, who have qualified in another field can also be a medical representative. However,
they will have to take to some training session about the diseases and related drugs in
which they want to specialize. Some pharmaceutical companies prefer candidates with a
qualification in business or biosciences, while some other companies prefer candidates
with sales backgrounds.

Who is eligible to apply?

Candidates who have pursued the higher secondary education with biology and
mathematics from any reputed schools/institutions can join for the bachelor’s degree in
related field. Some top universities offer the related programs like pharmacy, biosciences,
healthcare, and business of four years duration. The admission to the schools/institutions
will be based on entrance tests organized by them.

Key points in the process

Study Higher Secondary with biology and mathematics from any recognized institutions
and secure good marks in the examination.
Find the colleges or universities which offer pharmacy biosciences, or healthcare and
pursue the bachelors’ degree.

Acquire some experience in the medical industry to get an exposure. This will help them
to get more chances while looking for the medical representative jobs.

Improve skills by attending some seminars or classes in the related medicine subjects.
Some companies offer specific training according to the candidates’ level of experience
in the field.

Get the certifications that expose your potential and skills in the same field.

Search for the jobs in the companies that recruit medical representative (MR) and apply
for it.


Interpersonal skills are required to develop trust and rapport that are a necessary part of
the sales process. You must be able to speak the language of the medical profession by
becoming familiar with complex medical terms and procedures. You will need to be able
to manage your time and project a highly professional image in the market.

Ability to take a challenge

Be willing to work hard

Should be well groomed

Should be polite and gentle

Should be dedicated and determined

Good knowledge regarding the human body and Microbiology

Should have sound product knowledge

Ability to generate prescriptions

Ability to achieve sales target

Should be self-confident

Should have patience

Should be expert in selling skills

Should have Problem-solving skills

Should know how to handle objections

Should have the good interpersonal skill

Should have good communications skill

Preferably Science background

Willingness to meet with different types of people

Ability to handle different types of customers

Should be able to handle the adverse situation

Ability to work under pressure

Ability to select the right product for the right customers

Ability to give the right information to the right doctors

Should be able to Pursue customers

Should be well accepted by customers

Should be Punctual

Should be able to read customer’s mind

Ability to extensive travel

Good listening skill

Ability to learn quickly

Should be good at English

Should have analytical skills

Should have good detailing ability

Ability to buildup Relationship with customers

Judicious utilization of promo materials

Ability to follow management instruction

Well mannered

Creative in problem-solving

Should possess a positive attitude

Should be loyal to management

Ability to explore Opportunities


Ability to work independently

Knowledge regarding time management

Ability to organize a scientific seminar

Ability to make an effective sales presentation

Ability to make an effective tour plan

Ability to handle competitor’s propaganda

Ability to stick with the assignment until the job is completed

Strategies to reach Doctors

As the ones who write the scripts, physicians are the most important audience in
pharmaceutical sales. Government regulations that place a heavy emphasis on disclosure
and industry self-policing efforts, such as the PhRMA Code on Interactions with
Healthcare Professionals, have required changes in how pharmaceutical companies
market products to physicians. But those are not the only factors. Physician reliance on
Internet technology for information and communicating is also forcing pharmaceutical
companies to re-tool their marketing strategies.

Traditional Marketing

Physicians value free drug samples and are willing to meet with sales representatives to
get them unless their medical network bans free samples. The industry finds samples the
most effective marketing tool and spends billions annually distributing free drug samples.

Critics of the practice say drug samples steer physicians to prescribe new, higher cost
medications when generics or lower-priced brand drugs are available. "Once therapy has
been initiated, patients and their insurers are likely to continue to pay for the new, costly
drugs," according to research by the Pew Charitable Trust Prescription Project.

Gifting of things such as meals, travel expenses, books, and speaking fees is a traditional
marketing tool under heavy fire. Some state governments have banned all gifts to
physicians, which can be confusing to marketers wanting to provide something as basic
as an ice cream cone at a national medical convention.
That image certainly illustrates how complicated it has become, and sales representatives
need to be familiar with the laws and regulations in each state. Pharmaceutical company
representative often develops working relationships with key opinion leaders or "thought
leaders" who influence other physicians through their professional status.

Emerging Tactics

Physicians have been among the earliest of the early adopters of mobile technology,
beginning with beepers and pagers, and then PDAs, smartphones, tablet PCs and other
handhelds that make patient records and reference materials portable.

With so many physicians already married to their electronic devices, apps for the iPad
and Smartphone seem a ripe niche for pharmaceutical companies. "Healthcare is a mobile
profession and lends itself to these devices," stated Bruce Carlson, publisher of Kalorama
Information, a market research company.

The global healthcare sector invested $8.2 billion in handheld devices and related
applications in 2009, according to Kalorama. Social networks like Facebook, LinkedIn
and Twitter, and hundreds of smaller niche sites allow physicians to organize professional
online communities for collaboration.
Physicians Interactive (PI), based in Marlborough, Mass., claims to have developed "the
largest network of online and mobile healthcare professional relationships in the United
States, reaching more than 875,000 physicians, nurses, and allied health professionals in
all major specialties." PI serves its pharma clients through the development of mobile and
online clinical resources for healthcare professionals.

Sermo, a free online MD-only community, claims 115,000 members, or 20 percent of all
U.S. physicians. Daniel Palestrant, MD, the site's founder and CEO, says 10 of the top 12
pharmaceutical companies are Sermo clients who "are engaging physicians through our
social media offerings built specifically to increase brand awareness." Sponsoring
companies can follow physician discussions such as their reactions to different
components of the health reform law, promote their brand and engage with physician
members, according to Sermo.

Marketing consultant Richard Meyer observes that the role of the traditional sales rep
who constantly seeks face time with doctors is "fading." Meyer and other industry
watchers say pharma need to re-tool their marketing efforts and bring more "medical
communication specialists" on staff to engage with physicians online. These medical
communicators could provide value-added services that help physicians sort through
information clutter while facilitating links with clinical trials, journals, and knowledge
opinion leaders.