HiMedia Laboratories, Crafting Excellence with the Hi-tech Microbiology Media Labs
Dr G. M. Warke, the visionary defined his brainchild HiMedia Labs as a brand “By the Scientists, For the Scientists, and Of the Scientists”, as he laid the foundation in 1976. The microbiology media manufacturing company, HiMedia Labs are one of India’s prominent laboratories contributing to the Pharmaceutical and Life Sciences industry. Since its inception, the employees and the highly qualified technocrats in top management are delivering solutions being in sync with the core value of the company i.e. ‘World Class Products at Affordable Prices’.
Dr Vishal G. Warke, Director of R&D- Cell Culture Biology, Immunology & Higronics divisions and his wife, Dr Priti Warke, Director of Regulatory Affairs, and Cell Culture Biology took over the brand’s Animal Cell Culture division in 2003 after they returned from the United States and continued the journey that initiated 44 years ago, paving the way for further success.
“The brand has been ‘leading from the front’ when it comes to delivering solutions with HiMedia’s Animal Cell Culture Division. We offer high-quality products including Stem Cells, Cell Lines, Primary Cells, Media for Biosimilars, Multi Compendial Chemicals, Assay Kits, Reagents and Laboratory Equipment, Sera for Cell Culture, Cell Culture Systems with it latest venture of development of media for manufacturing biosimilars,” Dr. Vishal G. Warke shared the solutions HiMedia Labs is offering in the industry.
Over the Years
Over the last four decades, the company witnessed the paradigm shift in Pharma and Bio-Pharma industries where small molecule manufacturing companies diversified into large Bio-Pharma manufacturing companies. Today, the brands in the industry manufacture therapeutic protein-based biomolecules like Insulin, EPO erythropoietin, growth factors (GMCSF, GCSF, etc.), and Biosimilars or magic bullets, namely, monoclonal antibodies (mAbs).
Meeting the Indian BioPharma Industry Challenges
With production volumes dictated by heavy Capex costs as well as high COGS, the Indian Biopharmaceutical industry faces the biggest challenge of providing high quality & affordable medicines to patients in need of the expensive therapeutic proteins.
In addition to manufacturing, marketing of newly available Biosimilars that have recently gone or are likely to go off-patent shortly is also a challenge within the industry. HiMedia as a brand is assisting in rapidly taking these molecules to the market by helping Biopharma manufacturers with the bioprocess development as well as optimized clone specific media development.
The brand provides media and bioprocess optimization to Indian companies so that they upsurge and produce large volumes of biosimilars from existing small bioreactors economically, thereby anticipating in playing a key role in the transition.
Working towards Innovation
The HiMedia team is a set of experienced and knowledgeable scientists who ensure being updated with the online official literature resources such as PubMed, Google Scholar, Research gate, various patent sites, etc. With Research and Development being the foundation of HiMedia, the brand invests its profits heavily (over 40%) in R&D especially in Animal Cell Culture division to meet the needs of Biopharma processes and media development. The organization has a State-of-Art, Upstream Media development and Bioprocess optimization lab, which is one of its kinds in India.
Recognitions and Awards
HiMedia Labs have never sought status and has remained focused on serving the scientific fraternity along with people of the nation and is being recognised for following the same approach. In 2019, Dr G. M. Warke was honoured as “Brand Ambassador of Maharashtra” in the category of research and innovation by Maharashtra Industrial and Economic Development Association (MIEDA), whereas, HiMedia was ranked as “Best Company of the Year 2018” in “Pride of Maharashtra” award series.
The brand has been felicitated as a first ranking unit from Nashik, Dindori Taluka for ‘Make-in-Maharashtra’ and ‘Make-in-India’ in the Maharashtra Investment Seminar 2016, by Honourable CM, Shri Phadanvis. HiMedia also received prestigious Rajiv Gandhi National Quality Award by Bureau of Indian Standards, India for quality services to the consumer in 2011 and Rajiv Gandhi National Quality Award Bureau of Indian Standards, India in 2006.
Ensuring Best Quality Products
HiMedia is certified with ISO9001:2015, ISO13485:2016, WHO-GMP, NABL accredited quality control lab as per ISO17025:2017 quality management systems. The brand assures the quality benchmarks including ISO guidelines, pharmacopoeia standards and other current regional guidelines with its stringent quality systems. The brand uses SAP, HANA and metadata analytics as a part of PAT (Process Analytical Technology) to implement QbD (Quality by Design). HiMedia Labs quality products are exported to Japan, USA, EU and many other countries.
Extending the Success
The Animal Cell Culture Division has set up a world-class upstream media development and bioprocess optimization lab as the Biosimilars sector is set to boom at a CAGR of 30-35%. Setting up an advanced Analytical Characterization Lab for mAbs and other therapeutic proteins, manufacturing media for Biotherapeutic protein production in their world-class cGMP facilities, in very large volumes, with single lot sizes of 5000 Kg are listed in the future endeavours of HiMedia. Additionally, they are working on developing media for storage and transportation of organs as well as a broad range of products to support the Stem Cell and Gene Therapy Industry. The brand will be a part of one of the largest in India and top media manufacturers in the world.
Government Spending and Industry Growth
“The Indian Government has been actively addressing and solving problems of the industry. However, there is a good scope to increase funding for Industry-Academia collaborations to translate basic scientific research into applied technology, thereby allowing brands to sell those products in the global market.” Dr Vishal G. Warke shares his views on the government’s role in the industry.
He further adds, “The government has extended support to start-ups via incubators; it can also support the companies which have crossed the SME segment with incentives, soft loans, grant in aid, subsidized land for projects etc., while we could help the govt. create an ecosystem that will support MSMEs in the Indian Biotech sector.”
Corporate Social Responsibility
With an aim to achieve a better and affordable lifestyle for fellow human beings, HiMedia contributes to the society with various CSR activities including the sponsoring the renovation of an entire food technology lab in Mumbai’s Institute of Chemical Technology, setting the Regenerative Medicine Research Centre as a joint venture with Sir J. J Hospital, Mumbai and an Autism Intervention Centre (AIC) namely, Paediatric Neuro Development Centre at Sion Hospital, Mumbai.
The organization has also donated a fully functional State-of-the-Art ‘Skin Regeneration Laboratory’ along with training modules, to the National Burns Centre, Mumbai. It works towards raising the level of education among underprivileged children by supporting Ishavidya’s endeavour.
Leading India to Global Platforms
“HiMedia is the lonely Pole Star in the Biotech Suppliers Space with respect to being the only Indian origin company amongst the “Top 10 Multinational Companies” in this segment. It is now time for Indian Biotech companies to rise and become global giants, rather than MNCs acquiring us. With this goal, we relentlessly march ahead to put our nation at the forefront in the field of Biotech, globally.” Dr Vishal G. Warke shares his views on how the Biotech Companies in India can lead the nation’s growth and position on global platform.