Glen Godresse Charts a New Course for Menarini Asia-Pacific: A Vision of Growth Through Patient-Centric Innovation

13 March 2024 | Wednesday | Interview

In a Candid Interview with BioPharma APAC, Menarini Asia-Pacific's New CEO Unveils His Strategy for Navigating the Region's Healthcare Challenges with Advanced R&D and Digital Transformation

BioPharma APAC sits down with Glen Godresse, the newly appointed Chief Executive Officer of Menarini Asia-Pacific, to discuss his strategic vision for the company's future. With over 25 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry and a personal drive influenced by his late mother's battle with cancer, Godresse is poised to steer Menarini Asia-Pacific towards addressing unmet patient needs through innovative R&D, partnerships, and a patient-first approach. Amid challenges and opportunities in the dynamic APAC region, Godresse outlines his plans for leveraging digital transformation, expanding market access, and prioritizing investments in niche therapy areas and anti-infectives to combat the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance. Under his leadership, Menarini Asia-Pacific aims to continue its legacy of growth and impact, fulfilling its commitment to health and life.


How will your experience influence your strategy and operations as the new CEO of Menarini Asia-Pacific?

Having been in the pharmaceutical industry for over 25 years, my resolve is stronger than ever to address the underserved needs of patients. Making a meaningful impact on people’s lives is driven by my own experience of my late mothers’ challenge with colon cancer, and the reality that while we have made tremendous inroads into industry in many disease areas, there is still so much work to do.


Today, at Menarini Asia-Pacific, our flexible business model and strong position in primary care and consumer healthcare enable us to touch the lives of around 11 million patients per month in the region. Our unique value proposition and localised business model allows us to work with our trusted partners to introduce medications that meet the needs of local markets and patients, often in niches that other companies may not focus on.


My priority for the coming months is to work with our regional and country teams to build on our achievements to date. Key to this is continuing to evolve our omnichannel customer engagement model to ensure even more unique and tailored interactions with our physicians. We will also continue to explore investments in more niche therapy areas, to provide access to truly life-changing or lifesaving treatments, in indications such as anti-infectives, to address the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance, which is particularly concerning in Asia. 

What immediate changes or initiatives do you plan to implement in your new role?

As a global company, we maintain a very local mindset across the 13 main markets in which we operate, and we have developed a broad multi-channel capability across primary care, specialty care, retail, e-commerce and consumer marketing. Fundamentally, I believe this is the right business model for our region and one that has enabled us to continuously grow our business exponentially over the years.


My priority for Menarini Asia-Pacific moving forward will be to work with the talented Menarini team to expand market access and accelerate long-term business and portfolio development by pursuing meaningful partnership opportunities while sustaining the development of our people, capabilities and culture.


How do you intend to address the challenge of unmet patient needs in the APAC region?


As a family-owned business, we, at Menarini, have the benefit of taking a more flexible, dynamic and long-term approach that achieve the dual goals of both running a successful and growing business whilst addressing unmet or underserved needs of patients across our region. 


Our strengths in primary care and consumer healthcare provides us the edge to forge meaningful partnerships to bring lifesaving treatments to patients. This is certainly the case in rare diseases, breakthrough cancer pain or the partnerships we are developing to bring much needed novel anti-infectives to market to address the growth of antimicrobial resistance in APAC. Our localised commercial model, strong in-market capabilities and established distribution network set us apart to ensure faster and easier patient access to medicines. 


This to me is the true definition of patient centricity and aligns firmly with Menarini’s vision, “Health, our commitment for life”. I am truly passionate about this, and it will ultimately guide us on the next chapter of our journey under my leadership.  

In what ways will Menarini Asia-Pacific's investment in proprietary and partnered brands evolve under your leadership?


Menarini has a long history as a commercialisation partner of choice, providing know-how and extensive market coverage across the APAC region in both RX and OTC products.


I will be placing more emphasis in specialty areas such as anti-infectives. This is especially important in APAC, given the region’s ageing population and the projected impact of antimicrobial resistance in the coming years. I will also be focusing on balancing between local country deals and building truly regional assets that have relevance across APAC.


At the same time, 2023 was a year of digital transformation for Menarini and we will continue to evolve our customer engagement models beyond traditional sales and marketing approaches. In the last one year, we have engaged over 30,000 unique physicians in our email marketing campaigns, using new tools to help us be more relevant to our customers, and providing the right information, to the right customers, via the right channel, at the right time. I look forward to continuing to scale this digital transformation, investing in technologies and strategies that enhance our offerings. 

Can you discuss any upcoming challenges or opportunities you foresee in the pharmaceutical industry, particularly in the APAC region?


Last year was challenging for the APAC region. External economic and geopolitical factors will likely continue to impact the industry as a whole. However, my team and I are confident of our ability to adapt and pivot as necessary.  


China, which is our leading market across the region in terms of sales, has been particularly challenged. However, we expect the economy and consumer demand to steadily rebound over 2024 and 2025, presenting us opportunities to ride the next wave of anticipated growth and accelerate our business, especially in retail and e-commerce sectors.


Having more than quadrupled our revenues since 2011 and consummated the largest number of acquisitions and partnership agreements in the last 3 years, the strong pipeline and potential for growing the business in our markets look promising, including the frontier markets. 


With Menarini’s enviable culture of trust, passion and entrepreneurial “can do” spirit that our partners and customers have come to believe in us, I am confident that we will continue to forge ahead and make a meaningful impact on the lives of patients across the region.

How will Mr. Maurizio Luongo's new role influence Menarini Asia-Pacific's strategy and operations, given his oversight responsibilities? 

I am incredibly grateful to Maurizio for his astute leadership of the region in the last five years. As Maurizio begins his new role as Chief Operating Officer of Emerging Markets (Asia-Pacific, Latin America, Turkey, Middle East and Africa) and Global Medical Marketing Pharmaceuticals, I look forward to continuing our close working relationship. 


I and my leadership team value his advice and we will continue to tap into his rich experience and the diverse business network that he has built during his time in the region. Collaboration with his team will also drive closer synergy with our global head office and localising the global resources and insights that he and his team can offer us will help further develop our markets and region in a sustainable manner.


Best Wishes for a Transformative Journey Ahead with Glen Godresse at Menarini Asia-Pacific


Under Godresse's stewardship, Menarini Asia-Pacific is set to enhance its investment in both proprietary and partnered brands, with a special focus on anti-infectives and digital transformation in customer engagement. These initiatives are designed to build on the company's strong foundation in primary care and consumer healthcare, ensuring that Menarini remains at the forefront of delivering lifesaving treatments to patients in need.

As Menarini Asia-Pacific embarks on this new chapter, the insights shared by Glen Godresse highlight not only the opportunities and challenges ahead but also the transformative potential of empathetic, patient-focused leadership in driving innovation and growth in the pharmaceutical industry.


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