Three local pharmaceutical companies merge lists on GSE as DAS Pharma

BY: Emmanuel Bruce
 Mr Anselm Ray Sowah (middle), Managing Director, GCB, together with Mr Nik Amarteifio (2nd right), Mr Ekow Afedzie (left), and some members of the GSE Council during the tolling of bell to signify trading od DAS Pharma.
Mr Anselm Ray Sowah (middle), Managing Director, GCB, together with Mr Nik Amarteifio (2nd right), Mr Ekow Afedzie (left), and some members of the GSE Council during the tolling of bell to signify trading od DAS Pharma.

Three local pharmaceutical companies, Dannex Limited, Ayrton Drug Manufacturing Limited and Starwin Products Limited have merged and listed on the Ghana Stock Exchange as DAS Pharma.

This move is to help the merged company become the largest pharmaceutical manufacturing company in the country with a range of over 80 products all of which will be manufactured locally.

It is also to help the company become the largest distribution network in the industry.

Speaking at the launch and listing of the merged company, DAS Pharma, its Chief Executive Officer, Mr Daniel Apeagyei Kissi, said the three companies that decided to merge had been operating in the country since the 1960s, signifying their resilience and importance to the economy.

He said the three companies would combine their individual capabilities to create a strong company with a strong distribution network, expanded product portfolio, and a strong human resource base.

“The merged entity would have a wide distribution network cutting across the whole country with over 2,000 active wholesale and retail customers in the network and staff strength of over 600,” he stated.

Improving efficiency

He said the synergies derived from the merger would enable the three companies to improve operating efficiency, optimise costs, improve the products offering to customers and consumers, grow volumes and profitability and thus achieve its growth ambitions and maximise shareholder value.

“We will invest in the business to strengthen our footing in Ghana and expand into the rest of West Africa and beyond.

“The company is coming into the market at an opportune time when the industry as we know is changing. Consumer and customer needs are changing, industry players are integrating vertically, dealer-owned brands are appearing on the market and technology is manifesting in online pharmacies, electronic payment systems, online healthcare systems, online doctors etc.

“All of these are changing dynamics which DAS Pharma is well placed to respond to and take advantage of to make even greater history,” he said.

Improving transparency

The Managing Director of the Ghana Stock Exchange, Mr Ekow Afedzie, for his part, said mergers brought about synergies that could increase the size of the market, improve performance and boost profitability of the market.

He said listing on the market also added additional benefits as it would bring more transparency to their dealings.

“Our disclosure requirements will make them disclose all their financial dealings to the investing public and there will be liquidity for their shareholders.

“As a new entity, they will also have the opportunity to raise long-term capital through rights issues and bonds on the stock market,” he stated.

He, therefore, used the opportunity to encourage local companies in the country to start thinking about mergers to form bigger entities so that they can take advantage of all the synergies that come with mergers.

The Chairman of DAS Pharma, Mr Nik Amartefio also noted that the business world was changing and new realities were emerging.

“To survive the next 50 years and beyond, new dynamics would have to be introduced and applied. Technology is fast changing the landscape of our industry and we need to respond to it.

“It is for this reason that the boards of the three companies recommended to its shareholders that the companies be merged. So today, we celebrate the birth of this merged entity, a company that we know be a force in the pharmaceutical industry,” he said.