Juan Aurelio Moncada, General Manager of Baxter Colombia and South Latin markets, walks us through the recent developments of Baxter, the “Baxter 2020” vision and how the company is bringing innovation to the market, while increasing the population’s access to healthcare.
Could you introduce yourself as well as update us on the recent developments of Baxter since you were appointed general manager Colombia and South Latin markets?
“Last year, our plant was recognized as Baxter’s number one plant globally in terms of quality. We are proud of the level of quality that can be displayed in Colombia.”
I have been working for Baxter since 2002, and it has been a pleasure to work for a company with such an important role in the global landscape. I have been in charge of the Colombian cluster – which includes eight South American countries – Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, and Uruguay – for one year. We have been facing some challenges, but have also identified new opportunities, which have let to outstanding financial capability, strong stability and continuous growth, in line with our Baxter 2020 vision that implies quality, profitability and innovation sustainment. We are working towards sustaining these financial results moving forward.
In Q1 2017, you were ranked in the top 20 leading pharmaceutical company in Colombia, occupying the 13th place with 70 million USD in revenues (QuintilesIMS 2017 data). What steps have you been taking to achieve these outstanding results?
Baxter Colombia has an eminently talented team that is committed to enhancing the company’s performance, while standing by our values. Additionally, we have a strong manufacturing capacity with our plant located in Cali, complying with the highest international and national quality standards. In fact, last year our plant was recognized as Baxter’s number one plant globally in terms of quality. We are proud of the level of quality that can be displayed in Colombia.
Baxter Colombia has been one of the first affiliates established outside of the US, today being the regional center for Latin America. In fact, last year you celebrated the company’s 60th anniversary. What is the importance of the Colombian affiliate today within the regional business strategy?
Colombia is very important for Baxter. From Bogotá and Cali, we lead the operations of the South Latin American Cluster, we have an important manufacturing plant in Cali, and we generate a considerable amount of sales, which makes us a great contributor to global operations. Baxter Colombia has a longstanding presence in the country, and represents the first affiliate that Baxter established outside of North America. These attributes are supplemented by our commitment to sustain and save lives thanks to our employees strongly devoted to the company and to shaping the work dynamic within Baxter. Consequently, our employees’ commitment is visible through the quality of the therapies we provide to our patients, remaining at the centre of everything we do.
Baxter makes multiple discoveries available in the areas of intravenous, renal, oncology, therapeutic and anesthetic proteins, among others. How is Baxter’s portfolio represented in Colombia?
Our portfolio in Colombia and globally seeks to save and sustain lives. That is our mission, that is the reason we work every day. This portfolio is represented in two core therapeutic areas: the first one is renal, including solutions for patients suffering from chronic and acute conditions. In this therapy we offer products, solutions and therapies for haemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis and acute dialysis. The second area is our hospital products, which include infusion systems and intravenous therapies; nutrition products, antibiotics, injectable pharmaceuticals, bio surgery and anaesthesia.
Do you plan to expand your product portfolio? Do you have any upcoming launches in the pipeline?
Launching new products is a continuous process in Baxter. We are consistently innovating, which is one of our key pillars for growth. R&D investments are in line with our vision to offer better solutions to our patients. One of our recent successful launches in Colombia was a combination of advanced technology and treatment for renal patients at home: Claria Sharesource®, a technology for automated peritoneal dialysis that features relevant attributes for both patients and doctors. This recent innovation allows patients to go through dialysis while sleeping. The information of the therapy is transferred to a clinical team, making it possible for physicians to monitor the therapy online and adjust it. Claria Sharesource® is available at renal clinics and can be used to reduce the visits and treat patients in a more cost-efficient manner. We expect this technology will result in a lower economic burden for the system; and will allow patients that are located in remote areas to receive a treatment that can be closely followed by top performing doctors. This concept is a brilliant example of how Baxter is contributing to increasing the access to health in Colombia, a country where patient access remains one of the main challenges.
How would you describe your partnership strategy?
Our main partners are the hospitals and clinics to whom we deliver our therapies and products to treat the patients in need. We are forming a unique strategy of maintaining win/win close relationships with these hospitals and clinics; as well as with other key stakeholders for us. This is the foundation for having successful clinical outcomes, which benefit patients and the health system in general. We also develop strong partnerships with distributors, who are an essential contributor when it comes to reaching certain remote geographical locations.
This year Baxter signed an agreement with Dorizoe Lifesciences to develop generic injectable products. How will this partnership agreement impact Baxter Colombia?
We are currently in the process of conducting an analysis of the market necessity to launch these molecules. It is certainly something we expect to happen soon; in alignment with our global corporation and the launch strategy.
Baxter has continuously been investing in Colombia, which resulted in increased production, sales and export rates in the last few years. As a leader in medication delivery, renal, how do you plan on maintaining this leading position and your reputation of excellence moving forward?
We are developing a strategy that relies on bringing innovation, while at the same time ensuring the availability to healthcare for all patients. Furthermore, we are remaining focused on quality, delivery and maintenance of the technology provided to the hospitals. It is of critical importance to ensure the functionality of the technology and on-time delivery.
What is the vision for the Baxter in 2020?
Our 2020 goal implies a strong focus on saving and sustaining lives under the best ethics and compliance practices. Making therapies available to patients, while standing by our credentials of delivering first-class quality as a central element of our cohesive business model; we are working to retain our market leadership and remain the partner of choice for our customers, stakeholders and more importantly, our patients. Additionally, our talented and committed team in Colombia is continuously working on improving the ambient and culture aiming to make Baxter the best place to work for its employees.