Novo Nordisk walking the line in Russia - The Post

Novo Nordisk walking the line in Russia

Still an interesting market for the pharma giants

January 28th, 2015 12:23 pm| by Christian W

Despite Russia enduring an economic downturn at the moment, the Danish pharmaceutical giant Novo Nordisk has announced that intends to hold steady with its activities in the country.

Jakob Riis, Novo Nordisk's head of marketing, told Bloomberg Business that the company was in Russia for “the long haul”.

“Russia is not a mess,” Riis said, according to Bloomberg Business. “We want to continue to run good business in the country and the new production facility will open soon.”

“My personal view is that this [conflict in Ukraine] will somehow, at some point, quiet down and somehow the economy is going to develop again. By sheer demographics and resources, it’s going to be an interesting market.”

READ MORE: Danish companies halt operations in Russia as rouble plummets

Huge diabetes issue
Novo Nordisk is currently constructing a plant in Russia, which Riis argues is a necessary long-term investment in a country that had nearly 7 million cases of diabetes last year and over 120,000 deaths related to the illness.

Since Russia annexed Crimea in March last year – leading to a flurry of western sanctions – the rouble has plummeted by over 40 percent against to US dollar, resulting in numerous Danish companies packing in their activities in the Russian market.