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Hasan Jibreel, Senior Director of Corporate Development of Julphar, recounts the startup of the new Saudi Arabia facility, which will begin its operations in late 2016.

Julphar in Saudi Arabia selects IMA equipment

We could tell you that it produces over a million boxes of medicine daily.
We could tell you that it holds 3,957 product registration certificates.
We could tell you it distributes medicine to over 40 countries.
But maybe all you need to know is that its mission is sustaining Health across the globe.
This is Julphar Gulf Pharmaceutical Industries, the largest generic pharmaceutical manufacturer in the Middle East and North Africa. Established in 1980 in the United Arab Emirates under the guidance of the Highness Sheikh Saqr Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Julphar’s first stand-alone facility produced only five products. Over three decades later, Julphar operates fifteen internationally certified manufacturing facilities globally, employs 3,000 people all over the world and registered sales revenues of AED 1.47 billion in the year 2015. Thirteen of the facilities are based in the United Arab Emirates and cover production areas including tablets, syrups and suspensions, which target the major therapeutic segments. Over and above this, there is Julphar Diabetes – their Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API) manufacturing facility entirely dedicated to producing raw material needed for insulin formulation. Producing 1,500 kg of recombinant human insulin, equivalent to 40 million vials of insulin per year, Julphar Diabetes is among the largest manufacturers of insulin in the world and the only one of its kind in the Middle East.
«Julphar is a virtuous example of the United Arab Emirates’ local businesses making an impact on the global stage», says Hasan Jibreel, Senior Director of Corporate Development of Julphar. This is the result  of Julphar’s ongoing international expansion strategy: after the launch of manufacturing facilities in Ethiopia and in Bangladesh, the new Saudi Arabia facility is expected to begin its operations by the end of 2016. After all, «emerging markets remain a key priority for sustainable growth, as Julphar’s Middle Eastern roots allow us to reach difficult markets in a timely manner».
The new plant will produce oral pharmaceutical formulations for the Saudi market, with an annual capacity of 1 billion tablets, 300 million capsules, 30 million bottles of syrups and suspensions. This Saudi Arabia facility has been built following the best international practices and all the production and packaging equipment are made by IMA.
In fact, both the oral solid dosage line and the oral liquid line are equipped with an IMA state-of-the-art granulation suite, coating equipment, handling systems, liquid processing and packaging lines. «IMA equipment simply fits all our needs», continues Hasan Jibreel.


What is the meaning of this new facility in Saudi Arabia for Julphar?

Saudi Arabia is our main market: more than 50% of our turnover comes from this area. Building this new factory is strategic for two main reasons. On one side, this new facility strengthens our presence in the Middle East and North Africa markets. On the other side, by opening this new plant Julphar complies with the new regulations in Saudi Arabia, which promote local manufacturers. This is just the first facility opening in the Gulf Area: for sure, other projects will come in the coming years.


What was your Company’s main reason for choosing IMA?

This is the first time we chose IMA to equip an entire factory. In Julphar, we always use top-of-the-line equipment. For the Saudi Arabia plant, we decided to involve IMA. Indeed IMA was the only manufacturer capable of assuring the quality we needed in the time we needed. Its presence in the Gulf Area did the rest: the high standards in After-Sales technical assistance provided by IMA have been crucial in our selection.


How does IMA equipment meet your requirements?

Accustomed to other suppliers, the decision to turn to IMA has been a challenge in a sense. The quality of IMA equipment has proven to be top-level. Both solid dose equipment and liquid processing and packaging lines are the best now available on the market. Thanks to IMA equipment, our Saudi Arabia facility has incorporated sophisticated processes and control systems, which consist of the raw material transfer through closed systems, recipe management with minimal operator intervention, automated cleaning to avoid cross contamination and in-process controls systems to ensure consistent product quality. We are proud to have IMA equipment in our new factory.


How was the collaboration with IMA?

We had technical meetings before finalizing the project for a whole year. Every time, I have appreciated IMA’s positive attitude: both the technical team and their management showed great willingness to collaborate with us. This is now continuing during the commissioning activities in our new plant. Everyone in Julphar would tell you that IMA was the best choice.

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