Spansules Pharmatech: One-Stop-Shop For The End-To-End Requirements Of Pharmaceutical Pellets

Dr. G.V. Subba Rao, Founder & Managing Director,  Harika Rao, Director

Dr. G.V. Subba Rao, Founder & Managing Director

Harika Rao, Director

Pharmaceutical pellets play an important role in the formulation, development and outsourcing of oral solid dosages. They are typically small, free-flowing particles that are created by an extrusion-spheronization process, transforming bulk actives & excipients into spherical units which can be easily filled into capsules. Pellets provide inherent benefits such as optimum drug absorption, even distribution in the gastrointestinal tract, dosage flexibility, improved pharmacokinetic performance and more. 

One of India's pioneer and oldest manufacturers of pharmaceutical pellets, offering a diverse range of products with the highest quality requirements and a proven track record in this field is Spansules Pharmatech.

 Spansules Pharmatech was founded in 2000 by Dr. G.V. Subba Rao, a doctorate in pharmaceutical sciences and technocrat with over 30 years of expertise in R&D with prominent healthcare organizations in India and overseas. Dr. Subba is ably is ably supported in the management team of Spansules by his family especially his daughter Harika Rao, who spearheads the commercial, marketing initiatives and his son Haswanth, who oversees finance & administrative functions. 

In an exclusive interview with India Pharma Outlook Magazine, Dr. Subba walks us through the distinctive facets of Spansules Pharmatech and its unique positioning in the industry. 

What are the major expectations of customers from pellets manufacturing pharmaceutical companies? How do you meet those expectations?

Spansules has been in the business for over two decades, serving most of India's top 20 formulation companies. Catering to such demanding clientele all through these years is certainly a matter of pride and necessitates a high level of production discipline. As a pellet manufacturer, we must have a highly stable product with rigorous quality documentation that can be suitable for our clients for onward submission with the respective regulatory authorities. 

Spansules has a strong technical team that has gained immense experience in understanding the regulatory requirements of several markets over the years. This knowledge has really aided us in meeting client expectations. Additionally, prompt delivery and price considerations are also key factors in retaining us. 

Shed light on the wide range of products as a pellet manufacturing pharmaceutical company?

 Spansules provides a diverse range of products across therapeutic segments such as Proton Pump Inhibitors, Anti Infectives, Cardiovascular, vasodilators, respiratory drugs, anti-inflammatory, antidepressants, anti-HIV, anti-emetics, and others that are suitable for most RoW markets. Domperi done, Tamsulosin- Dutasteride, Doxycycline Hyclate, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Dabigatran, Pancreatin, Orlistat, Itraconazole, and Stabilized vitamins are some of its specialty products. 

In addition to standard products, Spansules has always developed bespoke products as per the specification of the clients and is one of the few manufacturers of customised Pancreatin pellets for select customers.

What are the major differentiating factors that set you apart from other players in this segment?

 The core competency of the firm lies in its proficient R&D team including Senior Scientists, Technical Graduates and various allied support staff, giving Spansules an intrinsic edge in its business. Spansules has always been early to adopt the latest tools and technology when needed and is one of the few pellet manufacturing companies in India to employ a novel technology to produce a widely used antifungal drug. We believe the key to making highly stable pellets is the quality of excipients used, an aspect on which we have never compromised till date. Thus, many of our clients pay a premium for our products compared to other peers in the market.

Spansules is an integral part of the supply chain of most pharmaceutical formulation companies having oral solid dosage forms in their portfolio

Dr. G.V. Subba Rao, Founder & Managing Director, Harika Rao, Director

Tell us about the overall journey of the company. Illustrate the growth it has observed in terms of revenue, clients & geographical presence.

Spansules began exporting in 2003 and received its first WHO, GMP, and ISO certifications in 2009. Our R&D unit was set up in 2012 and we took over one facility as well as established our API unit in 2022. Currently, we are equipped with four manufacturing units located in and around Hyderabad, along with our new API unit in Srikakulam near Visakhapatnam. With all manufacturing facilities supported by robust infrastructure and compliance to GMP standards, today Spansules is an integral part of the supply chain of most pharmaceutical formulation companies having oral solid dosage forms in their portfolio.
We have various international dossiers and have exported to over 30 countries directly/indirectly. From humble beginnings, we have grown to a Group turnover of over ₹250 crore in FY2022 and have set a target to double our top line in the following 3-4 years. 

What is the future road map for Spansules? How is the Company gearing up for the same?

As we proceed ahead, our immediate strategy is backward integration into API, primarily for usage in our pellets, which would open up a lot of new markets making us more cost competitive in certain products. In addition, we intend to expand our DC (directly compressible) granules products in response to customer demand, as well as consider specialty pellets in oncology, steroids, peptides, and enzymes. 

Also, we will be working on taste masking technology, and we are in the process of gradually updating our manufacturing units to meet regulated market accreditations such as EU cGMP, US FDA, and more.

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