15 Top Pharmaceutical Companies in Singapore to watch
Singapore is known to be a leading pharmaceutical science hub for companies that wish to grow their Asia Pacific (APAC) market share through innovation and growth. In 2020, the pharmaceutical science industry in Singapore contributed about SGD8.5 billion to Singapore’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), indicating a significant increase compared to SGD6.2 billion in 2019.
Projected growth of Singapore’s pharmaceutical science market
The pharmaceutical science market in Singapore is supported by a highly skilled workforce of more than 7,000 people on average, and the number of people working for pharmaceutical companies is said to increase rapidly with demand in the next few years according to the Economic Development Board (EDB).
Top pharmaceutical companies and governments around the world are also highly invested in building large inventories of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) and drugs to ensure supplies of medicines remain uninterrupted and can be made close to market.
Currently, Singapore is home to more than 50 top pharmaceutical companies and manufacturing facilities, including plants owned by eight of the world’s 10 biggest pharmaceutical companies such as Abbott, Pfizer, and AstraZeneca.
Here’s Real Life Science’s List of 15 top pharmaceutical companies in Singapore and what you can expect from them:
One of the top pharmaceutical companies in Singapore is Abbott, a company that is dedicated to help people across APAC live healthier lives through a diverse range of science-based nutritional products, diagnostic tools, medical devices and branded generic pharmaceuticals.
In light of the pandemic, Abbott’s ‘Panbio Covid-19 Antigen Self-Test’ is an example of a toolkit approved by the Health Sciences Authority (HSA), that is available at major chains such as Watsons and Guardian in Singapore.
Amgen is committed to unlock the potential of biology for patients suffering from serious illnesses by discovering, developing, manufacturing, and delivering innovative human therapeutics.
Amgen Singapore was listed 21st out of 200 in Singapore’s Best Employers 2021 list, and first in the Health Care Equipment & Services category having established a manufacturing plant here in 2014.
AstraZeneca is a global, science-led biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the discovery, development, and commercialisation of prescription medicines, primarily for the treatment of diseases in three therapy areas – Oncology, Cardiovascular, Renal & Metabolism, and Respiratory & Immunology.
AstraZeneca Singapore was certified to be a Great Place to Work and Great Place to Learn as of October 2020 to September 2021. 85% of employees at AstraZeneca Singapore say it is a great place to work. Other than the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines which are widely used in Singapore, there are currently five additional vaccines approved under the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) Emergency Use Listing (EUL), namely AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, Sinopharm, Sinovac and Covishield.
- GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)
GlaxoSmithKline Singapore (GSK) was the first global healthcare company to establish a presence in Singapore, with their regional headquarters of Emerging Markets and APAC pharmaceutical and consumer healthcare businesses. They have a significant manufacturing presence in Singapore, comprising of two global manufacturing supply sites and a vaccines manufacturing facility.
The Ministry of Health (MOH) has signed an advance purchase agreement with GSK and Vir Biotechnology for their antibody drug to treat Covid-19. The drug, sotrovimab, will be made available to healthcare institutions from September, provided there are no unforeseen delays in delivery.
Hyphens Pharma, part of Hyphens Group, focuses on sales and marketing of innovative medical and pharmaceutical products in selected ASEAN countries. This is done through exclusive distributorship or licensing, and supply agreements with brand principals mainly from Europe and US.
Hyphens Pharma International was one of the pioneers in Singapore who embraced e-commerce before the pandemic and has since expanded its efforts in promoting and selling products online.
One initiative involved pushing the presence of its brands Ceradan, Ocean Health and Sterimar on e-commerce platforms such as Shopee, Lazada, Qoo10 and Amazon through sales and marketing efforts.
In 2018, Johnson & Johnson opened its APAC headquarters in Singapore, which brought together more than 1,400 employees from their pharmaceutical, medical devices and consumer businesses.
Located in Singapore’s Science Park, the complex is home to a Leadership Lab, a Design Lab, and a Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute—that will spur innovative ways of working in the region and drive deeper collaboration with partners across the entire healthcare ecosystem, including government bodies, healthcare agencies and academic institutions.
Johnson & Johnson Vision, part of the Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies, is now pioneering an integrated eye health ecosystem to meet Singaporeans’ eye health needs at every life stage, with the support of EDB for talent development.
Lonza Singapore brings technological insights with world-class manufacturing, scientific expertise, and process excellence, to help their customers to deliver new and innovative medicines that help treat a wide range of diseases.
Their Tuas site is a mammalian cell culture manufacturing facility for the contract development and production of biopharmaceutical products. This includes monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), cellular therapeutics and other recombinant proteins.
As a global leader in medical technology, services and solutions, Medtronic improves the lives and health of millions of people each year.
For Medtronic, APAC is one of the fastest growing regions with business operations including two manufacturing operations, two innovation centers, two R&D centers, and 16 distribution centers.
Medtronic's latest innovation includes a partnership with Statis Health, a unit of Stasis Labs, to promote a bedside patient monitoring system in India. It tracks six vital signs, a tablet and a cloud-connected app that enables remote monitoring across devices.
Menarini APAC operates across a commercial value chain, ranging from clinical development, regulatory approval, and product launch to lifecycle management with a diverse portfolio of proprietary and partnered brands.
They’ve partnered brands in key therapeutic fields, including Consumer Health, Dermatology, Allergy/Respiratory, Gastroenterology, Cardio-metabolic, Anti-infectives, Oncology/Specialty Care and Men’s Health. This August 2021, they’ve also signed a multi-year exclusive licensing agreement to assume the registration, sales, marketing, and distribution of the orally administered gabapentinoid mirogabalin (brand name; TARLIGE®), in the Philippines, Malaysia and Singapore.
For 130 years, MSD has brought forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world’s most challenging diseases in pursuit of their mission to save and improve lives.
They demonstrate their commitment to patients and population health by increasing access to health care through far-reaching policies, programmes, and partnerships.
Aiming to be at the forefront of research, Merck is developing molnupiravir in collaboration with Ridgeback Biotherapeutics, an anti-COVID drug. They are now in phase 3 of their trial to examine whether the drug prevents infection in those living in the same household as someone with confirmed COVID-19.
Novartis’ purpose is to discover new ways to improve and extend people's lives through science-based innovation to address some of society's most challenging healthcare issues.
Novartis Biome Singapore was launched in Singapore in early 2021. It is Novartis’ first innovation hub for the APAC, Middle East, and Africa region, dedicated to driving and managing partnerships with digital health start-ups, innovators and thought leaders in healthcare transformation.
They’ve also launched their Biome Fellowship Program, a six-month incubation program offered to the best-in-class ventures to accelerate their early-stage growth.
Pfizer’s purpose is to be a breakthrough that change patients’ lives by advancements in wellness, prevention, treatments, and cures to diseases. Pfizer possess a vast portfolio of treatments across vaccines, oncology, cardiovascular diseases, infectious diseases, immunological disorders, rare diseases, and mental health. They strive to set the standard for quality, safety and value in the discovery, development, and manufacture of health care products.
Pfizer-BioNTech development of the COVID-19 vaccine is now widely used across the globe to control the spread of the virus, as well as protect the masses from full-blown symptoms and life-threatening circumstances. Reported by the Health Science Authority (HSA), the vaccine has a high efficacy of approximately 95% as at time of release of the vaccine, in preventing symptomatic COVID-19 disease in vaccinated persons aged 16 years and older.
To find out more about the vaccine, how it works, its relevant side-effects, and how it compares to other vaccines like Moderna and Sinovac, we also did an interview with Dr Timothy Low which you can watch below.
Roche Pharmaceuticals is active in areas such as oncology, inflammation, virology and metabolic disease, as well as the central nervous system. Singapore serves as its regional headquarters for Roche Diagnostics, responsible for all aspects of sales and marketing within APAC for the implementation of global processes at the regional level.
Many would have seen the ‘SD Biosensor Sars-CoV-2 Antigen Self-Test Nasal’, Roche Diagnostics APAC distributed Covid-19 self-test kits that are now made available across polyclinics and pharmacies. Approved by the HAS, this self-test kit would give trusted results, and encourage accountability and responsibility of Singaporeans in the fight against the virus.
Sanofi Singapore is a regional hub, housing a strong clinical research unit which oversees clinical trials conducted in 150 centres across Southeast Asia and a manufacturing facility. It is responsible in producing API which is used in key Sanofi products globally.
Earlier this April, Sanofi also shared that it would invest SGD637.8 million over the next five years in a new vaccine production site in Singapore. The new facility at Tuas Biomedical Park would provide Sanofi with the ability to produce innovative vaccines on a massive scale for Asia and respond to future pandemic risks. The project is expected to create up to 200 local jobs.
Zuellig Pharma is one of the largest healthcare services groups in Asia and their purpose is to make healthcare more accessible. They provide digital and commercial services to support the growing healthcare needs in the Asia region.
To enhance their commitment to make healthcare accessible to the masses, they have also announced a new partnership with Moderna to supply the COVID-19 Vaccine Moderna in Southeast Asia, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan.
Zuellig Pharma Singapore was also presented with the 'Industry Champions of the Year' title at the recent Asia Corporate Excellence and Sustainability (ACES) Awards that recognises inspiring leaders, sustainability advocates and businesses' contributions to their communities and the world.
Real is a partner to top pharmaceutical companies in Singapore
Real Life Sciences Singapore is one of the leading recruitment agencies and head-hunters in Singapore that specialises in bridging the gap between highly accomplished professionals and top pharmaceutical companies.
For more than 20 years, our recruitment company in Singapore has been connecting mid to high-level professionals with leading companies across niche sectors of the life sciences industry.
Whether you are a professional looking for an exciting new opportunity, or a life science organisation looking for the best players to join your team, if you would like to find out more about what we can do for you, please reach out to us via the form below.