Transcript: Ego Pharmaceuticals Pty Ltd Case Study


Alan Oppenheim: Ego Pharmaceuticals is Australia’s largest manufacturer of dermatology products.

We make our own products in our own world class pharmaceutical plant here in Melbourne.

Ego was founded in 1953 by my parents, my father a chemist, my mother a nurse. Today we’re 520 wonderful people across 12 nations.

One of the things that we’re proud of is the innovation that we use to drive our manufacturing. We need to meet the world quality standards for pharmaceuticals and we need to drive efficiency at the same time, and with great innovation we do that. We do that by redesigning, reengineering our processes and getting the world’s best manufacturing plant to meet our needs.

We’re in our new global head office, which is an awesome building. It’s designed around our people. So this building is about the past, it’s about the heritage of Rae and Gerald, my parents. It’s about providing a great innovative culture in the organisation and it’s about the future.

In our global distribution warehouse out the back we can now pack up to two containers for export at the same time and we can expand that to three containers as our international business grows.

QV in Australia is market leader and it’s more than double its nearest rival in pharmacies in Australia. It’s market leader in Saudi Arabia, it’s prescribed by dermatologists in the UK on the NHS.

Last year 40% of our business was export and the plan is to be 50%, to be 50/50 by 2020.

Export allows Ego to grow faster. We learn from one country, we try to apply that information to other countries and we put it all into a broader box of knowledge. That synergy makes us a more robust, more sustainable business for the long term.

So in 2016 Ego won the Australian Export Award for Health and Biotechnology, which was awesome. It was fantastic for my 520 staff across 12 nations, and it gives us a little extra way of breaking into new markets. So when we’re talking to new customers in a new country, they know who we are and they know a little bit more, that the Australian Government thinks we’re okay.