Home to 200+ Pharmaceutical Units, What’s the Future of Pharma Start-ups in Andhra Pradesh

Andhra Pradesh pharma start-ups are pegged to grow as they ride on the technology wave in the state.


After the establishment of Telangana and the loss of Hyderabad, India’s computer centre, the start-up ecosystem of Andhra Pradesh witnessed a setback with the shift of a critical economic component. However, with the growing wave of start-ups in India, government policies and initiatives have significantly impacted high tech ecosystems. While Startup India’s core policy is setting the tech industry’s general direction, state-level guidelines are defining the areas of the state that require the most attention.

Over the years, Andhra Pradesh, especially Andhra Pradesh pharma sector, has attracted many large business incubators and accelerators such as NASSCOM 10K Depot and Startup Accelerator India. While NASSCOM previously had the infrastructure and space in Andhra Pradesh, in 2019, the apex body for the country’s IT industry moved out of the state and decided to help the start-ups virtually.

Andhra Pradesh Government’s Support for Start-up Growth

The state has taken steady steps towards developing the start-up ecosystem, and the government has been actively involved in its technological development. Government initiatives include measures such as the national innovation and start-up policy, which balances tax and non-tax incentives, such as:

Creating incubators and accelerators

Innovation fund Rs. 50 crores

Performance assistance of over Rs 12,000 per month for start-ups

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The next few years will see a significant increase in exports of many governments approved drugs, as many multinational companies are ready to invest large amounts in medications and formulas.

Pharma Sector & New Investments to Drive Growth

Ever since the bifurcation of the former Andhra Pradesh into Telangana and new Andhra Pradesh in 2014, these two states’ governments have been making all kinds of efforts to attract economic investment. The two state governments are in the shadows of attracting maximum investment using tech systems and attractive business policies.

Andhra Pradesh’s government is trying to attract investment in the pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, and medical device sectors. The state government has been advertising benefits to investors for quite some time. It had also announced establishments of pharma clusters in northern, central and southern parts of Andhra Pradesh.

Pharma, Biotechnology and Medical Devices Star-ups- Riding the high wave

In particular, the two states’ pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical sectors are benefitting from all the necessary promotions. Andhra Pradesh has been very successful in attracting hordes of investors. Telangana, which already acquired an established pharmaceutical industry through Hyderabad, has established itself in the pharmaceutical industry with ‘Pharma City’ plans.

At the same time, Andhra Pradesh’s government has also created a drug association, which plays a crucial role in attracting the world’s best players in the field of drugs and medical devices.

Currently, the northern districts of Visakhapatnam and Vizianagaram in Andhra Pradesh have a strong base for bulk drugs and formulations companies. It is expected that the industry, which is worth $1 billion currently, is expected to grow to $4 billion in the next few years.

Existing Key Players in Andhra Pradesh’s Pharma Start-up Ecosystem

Telangana and Andhra Pradesh have over 2,500 pharmaceutical companies. Some of the largest pharmaceutical companies are Dr Reddy Laboratories, Aurobindo Pharmaceuticals, Mylan, Novartis, Nicholas Piramal, Divi Labs, NATCO Pharma, and Gland Pharmaceuticals. More than 200 Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) units in the state are poised to expand at a rate of 10 to 15 per cent yearly in future.

Andhra Pradesh to develop as bulk drugs hub

The administration of Andhra Pradesh is working to recover the lost ground in Hyderabad’s accession to Telangana. It is trying to increase drug exports from the state and capture the country’s mass production chain. Within this framework, the government decided to form drug groups in three parts of the state. 

The next few years will see a significant increase in exports of many governments approved drugs, as many multinational companies are ready to invest large amounts in medications and formulas.

Northern Andhra Pradesh has a multi-million-dollar pharmaceutical industry and is considered a central hub. Visakhapatnam (Vizag) has become a hub for the country’s major pharmaceutical companies due to the government’s efforts to promote large-scale pharmaceutical production. By 2022, Vizag is expected to become one of the largest pharmaceutical exporters in India.

What’s in it for you?

With Andhra Pradesh as an emerging pharma sector hub, technological advancements will follow the route in the state. It is a golden opportunity for new businesses in the state and across the country to aim for the ‘to-be’ hub of the pharma start-ups ecosystem.

Start-ups in e-commerce, digital platforms like payment gateway, cloud services, and others can devise strategies to take advantage of a profitable opportunity in ways that can ease business and customer experience. It is not an overstatement to say that a lucrative sector as pharma and medicine is no less than a gold mine. All that entrepreneurs and wannapreneurs need are the right tools (technology) and an apt strategy to collect their share from the gold mine.

Aakash Sharma
Aakash Sharma
Aakash writes on Startup Ecosystem, Policies, Legal and Regulatory aspects of business planning. An alum of Delhi University, he is assistant editor at Dutch Uncles.

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