Anticipating favourable business prospects, Renata Limited, a leading drugmaker in the country, has made a strategic decision to enter the diagnostic industry.
It has identified a prime location on Eskaton Garden Road in Dhaka to set up cutting-edge diagnostic laboratories.
Renata's primary focus has traditionally been on the production of human pharmaceuticals and animal health products.
However, recognising the evolving landscape of the healthcare industry, the drugmaker is diversifying its portfolio by delving into the diagnostic sector.
Renata officials emphasised that this expansion aligns with the company's forward-thinking approach and long-term vision.
In a stock exchange filing on Sunday, the company announced that its board of directors has approved the acquisition of 25.32 decimals of land at a cost of Tk36.33 crore, excluding registration and incidental expenses.
Company officials highlighted the strategic importance of the chosen location, situated in close proximity to two of the country's major healthcare institutions: Birdem General Hospital and Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University.
This proximity will provide patients with convenient access to high-quality diagnostic services, enhancing the overall accessibility and effectiveness of the company's healthcare offerings.
Company Secretary Md Jubayer Alam told The Business Standard, "Currently, some tests are required to identify diseases; somewhat all are not possible in the country. As a result, we need to go to a neighbouring country, which is costly."
"To ease the hassle and ensure comfortable services for all tests, including rare cases, we want to introduce a world-class testing system so that people do not have to go outside the country."
"At present, we are far behind in world-class diagnostic testing systems, so we want to fill the gap," he added.
According to the Directorate General of Health Services, there were around 1,500 private diagnostic centres all over the country by 2020.
According to industry insiders, among the diagnostic centres, LabAid, Popular, Prescription Point, and Praava Health are major service providers in the country.
Renata Limited, formerly Pfizer Limited, is one of the leading and fastest-growing pharmaceutical and animal health product companies in Bangladesh.
It started operations in 1972 as Pfizer (Bangladesh) Limited.
In 1993, Pfizer transferred the ownership of its Bangladesh operations to local shareholders, and the name of the company was changed to Renata Limited.
According to its website, Renata is the 4th largest pharmaceutical company and the market leader in animal health products.
Renata, which owns ten manufacturing facilities, exports its products to around 16 countries.
The company owns three subsidiaries, namely Renata Agro Industries, Purnava, and Renata Oncology.
In fiscal 2022-23, the company reported a 6% growth in revenue, but profit declined by 54%. It will pay a 62.5% cash dividend to its shareholders.