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Page 59 Volume 3, Number 2 2009 Medical Journal of Therapeutics Africa


Pharmaceutical manufacturing in Table 1. Member companies of Kenya

Kenya Association of Manufacturers described as
Pharmaceutical and Medical Equipment
MEMBERS OF THE KENYAN ASSOCIATION OF Manufacturers. Factories are mostly in or
1. African Cotton Industries Limited
According to the web-site of the Kenya Association
of Manufacturers, they have 615 member compa- 2. Alpha Medical Manufacturers Limited
nies, of which 455 are in Nairobi and surrounding 3. Beta Healthcare International Limited
areas, and 23 in Nakuru. 4. Biodeal Laboratories Limited
The association reports 20 member companies 5. Bulk Medicals Limited
described as Pharmaceutical and Medical Equipment 6. Cosmos Limited
Manufacturers, these are listed on the right column.
7. Dawa Limited
Of the 20 companies listed, 5 had web-sites that 8. Elys Chemicals Industries Limited
were accessible from the KAM web-site. A brief 9. Gesto Pharmaceuticals Limited
description of each company follows.
10. GlaxoSmithKline Kenya Limited
Alpha Medical Manufacturers Limited manufac- 11. KAM Pharmacy Limited
turers syringes. It has an installed capacity of 72
million syringes (1, 2, 5, 10, and 20mL) with ready 12. Laboratory & Allied Limited
stocks of over 8 million disposable syringes with dis- 13. Manhar Brothers (K) Limited
posable needles. According to their website 14. Medivet Products Limited
( they additionally trade and 15. Novelty Manufacturing Limited
stock medial surgical supplies, bandages, gloves,
fluids, IV cannulas and IV sets. 16. Pharm Access Africa Limited
Dawa Limited manufactures analgesics, antialler- 17. Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Co (K) Limited
gics and respiratory agents, antibiotics, penicillin 18. Regal Pharmaceuticals
derivatives, antimalarials and artemisin combination 19. Revital Healthcare (EPZ) K
therapies, central nervous system-acting drugs, gas-
20. Universal Corporation Limited
trointestinals, nutritional supplements, surgicals and
veterinary products plus antihelminthic agents, cor- livestock purposes (to) exacting WHO GMP stan-
ticosteroids, skin agents and hormones. Their dards. Dawa Limited is an established QZA/GMP
address is Baba Dogo Road, Kenya. On their compliant manufacturing facility that is both efficient
Company Information page on their web-site and has a high production capacity.”
( they state “Dawa Glaxo Smithkline Kenya Limited web-page
Limited ...(is) manufacturing the whole range of clicks to the international website at
quality pharmaceutical products for both human and An article on the GSK web-site
Page 60 Volume 3, Number 2 2009 Medical Journal of Therapeutics Africa

was written by Elana Stolpner MD Alpha Medical Manufacturers
Aventis Pasteur SA East Africa
Laboratory & Allied Limited was “incorporated in
November 1970 as a private trading company deal- Bayer East Africa Limited
ing mainly in general healthcare sundries, toiletries, Beta Healthcare (Shelys Pharmaceuticals)
laboratory chemicals and glassware, and other relat- Cosmos Limited
ed products” according to their web-site at Dawa Pharmaceuticals Limited And, they “took calcu-
lated advantage of the government policy of sup- Didy Pharmaceutical
porting local entrepreneurs in the pharmaceutical Diversey Lever
sector, to increase manufacturing capacity and capa- Eli Lilly (Suisse) SA
bility, by investing heavily in pharmaceutical manu-
Elys Chemical Industries Limited
facturing. L&A grew to become one of the leading
suppliers of quality-approved pharmaceutical prod- GlaxoSmithKline
ucts to the government's Essential Drugs High Chem East Africa Limited
Programme.” Their range of drugs includes anal- Ivee Aqua EPZ Limited Athi River
gesics and antipyretics, antacids, antiulcer agents,
Mac’s Pharmaceutical Limited
antiamoebics, aerobicidals, antiasthmatics, antibi-
otics, antifungals, antihelminthics, antihistamines Manhar Brothers (Kenya) Limited
and antiallergics, antihypertensives, antimalarials, Novartis Rhone Poulenic Limited
antirhematics and antiinflamatories, chemothera- Novelty Manufacturers Limited
peutics, cough expectorants and antitussives, der-
matological preparations, eye, ear, nose and throat Pfizer Corp (Agency)
preparations, local vaginal reactants, over-the- Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Co (K) Limited
counter products, tranquilizers, vitamins and Pharmaceutical Products Limited
hematopoetics and verterinary products. Phillips Pharmaceuticals Limited
Pharm Access Africa Limited does not appear Regal Pharmaceutical Limited
from their web-site to manufacture drugs, they
appear to link donor and investment agencies with Universal Pharmaceutical Limited
need. Their web-site is http://www.pharmacces- Table 2. List of manufacturing companies in Kenya, from Kenya’s Pharmaceutical Industry
2005. All have faqctories in Nairobi except Ivee
Companies that have websites which are not acces- Aqua EPZ Limited, which is in Athi River.
sible from the KAM web-site are listed below., as 3 medical gradu-
African Cotton Industries Limited (http://www.
ates with postgraduate qualifications. was started in 1954, and now has
over 450 employees in Nairobi. They make cotton Bulk Medicals Limited has a post office box and
wool, toilet paper, feminine towels, serviettes (nap- phone and fax numbers listed next to their geo-
kins), facial tissues, pocket tissues, kitchen towels, graphic address, which is Nairobi Kenya. In the web-
petroleum jelly, hair conditioner, surgical gauze in site, this com-
factoreis in Mobasa and Nairobi. They have some pany is listed as having manufactured a registered
testimonials for the toilet paper on their web-site, drug, 100mg carbocisteine on 16 June 2005. They
they are clearly very proud of their success in man- are listed in the Nairobi phonebook as being manu-
ufacturing and selling toilet paper. facturers, agents and distributors.
Beta Healthcare International Limited did not Cosmos Limited has drugs registered by the
have its own web-site. From various web-sites, this Ministry of Health Pharmacy and Poisons Board:
company appears to be a subsidiary of an Indian these drugs include antimalarials, antibiotics and
company, which appears to make and distribute analgesics and antiretrovirals, see box at lower right.
pharmaceutical products in Kenya. The current Head
at Beta Healthcare International Limited Kenya was GlaxoSmithKline ... agreed to a voluntary license
trained in management in Mubai, India. with the Kenyan-based generic pharmaceutical
manufacturer Cosmos to produce generic forms of
Biodeal Laboratories Limited is an Indian com- the antiretroviral drugs zidovudine and lamivu-
pany that manufactures drugs in India and distrib- dine.... Cosmos will be able to sell the drugs in
utes them in Kenya. No evidence was found for Kenya, Burundi, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda..
manufacturing in Kenya. Senior management in the
company in India are listed on the web-site, 23 Sep 2004,
Page 61 Volume 3, Number 2 2009 Medical Journal of Therapeutics Africa

Universal Corporation limited is based in India. Table 3. From the United States Health and
It manufacturers drugs near to Nairobi, according to Human Services Clinical Trials Database at
its web-site (, a total of 42, which
include antimalarials, analgesics, antibiotics, antifun-
gals and antiretrovirals. In Feb 2009, 38,248 clinical trials were reported in
the US, 81 clinical trials were reported in Kenya.
Revital Healthcare (EPZ) K makes surgical
instruments in Mombasa, web-site is http://revital- In Kenya: -32 studies tested therapies for preventing and
Regal Pharmaceuticals is a wholly Kenyan owned treating malaria
pharmaceutical company http://regal.regalpharma- -33 studies tested therapies for preventing and that manufacturing analgesics, treating HIV/AIDS
antacids & antispasmodics, anthelminthics, antibi- -2 studies were for treating tuberculosis
otics, antihistamines, antimalarials, corticosteroids, -21 studies were funded by industry
cough preparations, cold remedies, multivitamins &
tonics, topicals. -7 studies tested the efficacy of vaccines
Elys Chemicals Industries Limited does not -0 studies of cardiovascular disease, hypertension,
have a web-page. The Pharmacy and Poisons Board diabetes, cancer
lists it as a manufacturer, and as having registered
manufacture drugs elsewhere, mostly in India, and
drugs including vitamins, pain relievers, antibiotics
have ethical drugs registered with the Kenyan
and cold medicines.
Poisons and Control Board which they distribute
KENYA’S PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY 2005 throughout Kenya and East Africa. These companies
Kenya’s Pharmaceutical Industry 2005, prepared by are registered in the Nairobi telephone book, are
the Export Processing Zones Authority, was down- members of the Kenya Manufacturers Association
loaded from It lists and are certainly complying with national and inter-
what it calls “some of the leading pharmaceutical national laws. However, they do not meet the MJoTA
manufacturing companies in Kenya”, they are given definition of a Kenyan pharmaceutical manufacturer
in Table 2. making drugs in Kenya.
From the list from the Kenya Manufacturing Several of the companies listed in the Nairobi phone
Association site, and the list from the Export book are in Kenya less to distribute drugs which are
Processing company, the conclusion MJoTA makes is made elsewhere, but more to run clinical trials in
that of these pharmaceutical companies, only Dawa Kenya, although they are employers in the United
Pharmaceuticals Limited and Regal Pharmaceuticals States, where MJoTA is produced. These companies
are wholly owned and operated by Kenyans, and in include Aventis Pasteur (which is now Sanofi-
both companies, the Kenyans are of Indian ancestry. Aventis), Bayer, Eli Lilly, GlaxoSmithKline, Novartis
The only other company that is wholly Kenyan- Rhone Poulenc, Pfizer. Clinical trials of pharmaceuti-
owned is the African Cotton Company. cal products ongoing in Kenya are given in Table 3.
The second conclusion is that several companies By the Editor-in-Chief
Businesses in Nakuru, in the Rift Valley of Kenya. Photos by the Editor-in-Chief.