The Serum Institute of India: An Overview


One company surged ahead as major pharmaceutical companies escalated their production to immunize the global population.

The Serum Institute of India (SII) might not be widely recognized, yet it is the most prominent vaccine manufacturer globally. It operated from its expansive manufacturing facility in Pune, Western India, and successfully produced an astounding 1.5 billion doses annually. India’s stock market advisory highlighted Serum Institute as one of the promising future stocks.

The company produced COVID-19 vaccines under authorization for pharmaceutical giants like AstraZeneca.

Origin story

The Serum Institute of India (SII) was established in 1966 by Cyrus Poonawalla, the father of Adar Poonawalla. Over time, it became the leading vaccine manufacturer globally, producing and distributing the highest vaccine doses. The institute’s vaccines reached approximately 170 countries and were distributed through various programs affiliated with the World Health Organization (WHO).

The Serum Institute of India (SII) commenced its journey to produce critical life-saving immuno-biologicals. These vaccines were scarce within the country and often had to be imported at considerably high costs. SII specializes in manufacturing vaccines such as the Polio vaccine and vaccines for Diphtheria, Tetanus, Measles, and various other crucial immunizations.

Commendable accomplishments

Serum Institute of India (SII) began producing various life-saving biologicals available at affordable prices. This initiative was pivotal in enabling India to achieve self-sufficiency in creating essential medical supplies, including Tetanus Anti-toxin and Anti-snake Venom serum. Furthermore, SII expanded its manufacturing portfolio to include the Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis (DTP) group of vaccines, contributing significantly to the country’s healthcare advancements.

Serum Institute of India initiated its first international acquisition in 2012 by acquiring Bilthoven Biologicals. This strategic acquisition facilitated access to crucial technology and expertise for IPV production (Injectable Polio Vaccine, Salk). Before this acquisition, the knowledge and capability for manufacturing this vaccine were limited, possessed only by three other vaccine manufacturers.

Adar Poonawalla became a part of the Serum Institute of India (SII) in 2001 and took over as the company’s CEO, assuming complete control of its daily operations in 2011. He anticipated selling hundreds of millions of vaccine doses in India. Despite the immediate challenges and uncertainties, Poonawalla remained committed to scaling production to meet the global vaccine demand.

The company finalized an agreement with Gavi-COVAX to furnish more than 400 million additional doses of COVID-19 vaccines during the pandemic. Gavi, a global health partnership to expand immunization access in underprivileged nations, used its Strategic Investment Fund, assisted the Serum Institute of India to produce potential vaccine candidates, and secured future vaccine supplies for low- and middle-income countries through Gavi’s COVAX AMC.

Serum Institute rolled out Covishield’s initial batches from the company’s Pune facility for distribution across various cities in India. This development attracted considerable attention from investors, who perceived it as a promising opportunity.

Is the Serum Institute of India listed on the stock exchange?

Some investors were keen to know the Serum Institute of India share price. The Serum Institute of India began operating as a private limited company, and it is not publicly traded on the stock market. Dr. Cyrus Poonawalla established the company in 1966 to produce life-saving immuno-biologicals, previously scarce and imported at high prices into India. As a subsidiary of Poonawalla Investment and Industries, it has been one of the world’s largest vaccine manufacturers and has contributed significantly to global vaccine distribution. The institute’s vaccine range included Pertussis, Hib, BCG, r-Hepatitis B, Polio, Diphtheria, Tetanus, Measles, Mumps, and Rubella immunizations.

As Serum Institute of India is privately held, its shares aren’t available for public purchase, and it is not listed on the stock exchange. However, several other promising investment opportunities exist in the market that also have potential

returns over the next few years.

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