Alphamed Pharma, the fastest-growing pharmaceutical distributor in the region, handles speciality products, prescription drugs, OTC and skincare products. The founding business of what has become Al Khayyat Investments, Alphamed was established in 1982 and is responsible for the sale and distribution of many of the world’s leading brands of pharmaceutical and related products to both private and institutional channels.
We interviewed Gamal Ali Abdalla, Head of Strategy and Planning – Pharma about the demand for natural and organic products in his country.
What natural/organic products do you import into the Middle East?
We import everything for both today and tomorrow. Predicting the trend of healthcare, we look into what to source for the market. For our retail outlets we import directly from suppliers. We have a distribution branch as well where we import directly and distribute on behalf of companies. We take the onus of a 100% journey on us, right from product registration to reaching the consumer. For certain products we even take care of the marketing. Our network is far and wide in the region.
What’s the average volume? Are these for retail or re-export? If re-export which are the major markets you send it to?
We have branches all over GCC, therefore it is not exactly for “re-export” but it is directly imported into the relevant region.
Can you tell me about the demand for organic products in the region? What is the latest trend that you see in organic products?
Selling green products are going to increase, as people are adopting a new lifestyle and are becoming more educated on the subject. We are noticing a positive influence from the West where the trend today is organic. Innovation is a key aspect in today’s day and age, because health matters.
Where do you import your products from, and how much of a role does certification play in your decision? What are your main challenges in sourcing?
We look into importing products from all over the world, especially USA, Europe – and we also have plans to source from Asia. Certification is very important for us.
From where and/or what products would you like to source more?
We are open and driven by innovation. Anything that stands out, or would be relevant in the market, we would like to have a look at.
Interviewed by Menaka Ramakrishnan, Buyer Manager