Hanmi Pharmaceutical, with No. 1 ETC Drug Sales in Korea for 3 Years, Invests 21% of Its Sales in R&D


Hanmi Pharmaceutical, a leader in the ethical (ETC) drug market, has been achieving strong qualitative growth and concentrating investment in research and development (R&D) for development of innovative drugs that may potentially turn into cash cows. Investors anticipate that the company will lead the remarkable growth of the Korean pharmaceutical and bio industry in the post-COVID-19 era.

Despite the economic slowdown caused by COVID-19 last year, Hanmi Pharmaceutical recorded steady sales with independently developed ETC drugs, such as Amozaltan, and maintained its No. 1 status in the ETC market in Korea for a third year in a year. In 2020, the company generated KRW 1.759 billion in sales, 21% of which was invested in R&D. More than 580 of its employees among the R&D personnel are working to develop 28 new drug pipelines including 8 metabolic disorder drugs, 12 anticancer drugs, 5 drugs for rare diseases, and 3 drugs for other diseases.

Driven by the balanced sales growth of independently developed incrementally modified drugs and combination drugs, the company achieved KRW 666.5 billion in ETC sales, according to the data from UBIST, and was ranked the No. 1 company in the domestic pharmaceutical industry, reaffirming Hanmi Pharmaceutical as the leader in Korea’s ETC market for three consecutive years.

Hanmi Pharmaceutical has been revitalizing the Korean pharmaceutical industry time and time again, introducing the country’s first-ever incrementally modified drug and combination drug, Amodipin and Amozaltan, in 2000 and 2009, respectively. The subsequent releases of the Amolzatan family, Esomezol, Naxozole, Gugutams and various other differentiated products have catapulted the company to the forefront of the pharmaceutical market.

In 2020, an independently developed product recorded a double-digit growth rate, thereby boosting the company’s total sales to KRW 666.5, a 2.2% YoY increase from KRW 652.4 billion in 2019. The combination drugs, Rosuzet and Amozaltan, also made it in the top 10 ETC drugs in terms of sales for the first time last year.

Rosuzet recorded an especially dramatic growth in sales. Ranked 9th in the domestic ETC drug market with KRW 81.0 billion in sales in 2019, it climbed to the 2nd spot (KRW 99.1 billion) in 2020 with 22% sales growth. It is No. 1 in sales, however, among the ETC drugs independently developed by Korean pharmaceutical companies.

△ Amozaltan, △ Amozaltan Plus, △Amozaltan Q, and △ Amozaltan XQ, the four therapeutic agents for hypertension that are part of the Amozaltan family, reached KRW 750.0 billion in total sales to date since their launch. There are 12 products that have surpassed the KRW 10.0 billion sales market (“Blockbuster” drugs), and they include Rosuzet, Amozaltan, Esomezol and Amozaltan Plus.

Hanmi Pharmaceutical plans to achieve global growth by developing a therapeutic drug for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and other innovative drugs for various conditions, including inflammation, fibrosis, metabolic disorders, cancer and rare diseases. LAPSTriple Agonist (HM15211), in particular, was proven to reduce liver fat by 50%, according to a recent clinical trial, and recognized as the most effective NASH treatment in the world. The drug has been designated as an orphan drug for treatment of primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC) and pPrimary biliary cholangitis (PBC) by the US FDA in 2020.

Hanmi Pharmaceutical has also established a plan to concentrate its R&D efforts in the areas of immunotherapy for cancer, inflammation, fibrosis, new platforms and rare diseases. in the second half of last year, Poziotinib was granted the FDA fast track designation following a successful clinical trial with subjects suffering from non-small-cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) with a HER2 variant, and there are plans to obtain FDA approval to market the drug this year. A global clinical trial is set to commence for Belvarapenib, which has been licensed to Genentech.

Source: Maeil Business