A patient-focused, global pharmaceutical brand that builds on a distinguished 235-year history to develop highly innovative medicines. Their operations span over 70 regions worldwide with products marketed in approximately 100 countries. This values-based leader has a long-standing relationship with Systech.
As a participant in the Access to Medicine (AtM) program, the company provides specialized drugs for GI, oncology and vaccines to patients in underserved regions that also are at highest risk for counterfeiting and product diversion.
Committed to patient health, the company launched a global product protection project to strengthen supply chain security in high counterfeiting areas, including Kenya, the Philippines and Ukraine. According to their Brand Protection Technologies Manager, “Serialization by itself will not end counterfeiting. It will help address the problem but won’t end it altogether.”
The company faces three major challenges in these markets:
For its initial product protection project, the company established digital authentication for oncology medicines manufactured in the EU before shipment to Kenya. The solution incorporated technology from the Systech Brand Protection Suite™ to establish anti-counterfeit and anti-diversion protections that worked with measures already in place.
The pharmaceutical leader takes a multi-layered approach to anti-counterfeiting—understanding that serialization is critical but not sufficient protection against counterfeiting. The new solution creates a unique digital signature, or “e-Fingerprint®,” based on micro-variances in the existing barcode on each package. The e-Fingerprint is stored on a secure cloud, then used to authenticate products at the individual item level through a smartphone app.
To reduce product diversion, the solution incorporated Systech’s track-and-trace system to implement the supply chain visibility the company needed. The enterprise-wide platform integrates internal and external serialized item information systems to provide real-time data on any unique package from the factory to the administering physician.
The digital authentication solution established effective protection for some of the company’s highest-value products in one of its highest-risk markets. The solution has been an excellent fit for the African market, where cellphone usage rates are high even in less technologically developed areas.
Implementation was extremely fast and cost-effective compared to other anti-counterfeiting measures that could include packaging changes or major production line overhauls. From initial hardware installation on the first packaging line to product testing, implementation took four days, with validation adding another two.
The success and relatively low cost of the pilot program demonstrated the potential for wide-scale implementation because the solution is:
- Brand Protection Technologies Manager
Now that the solution has been proven in one of the company’s highest-risk markets, the pharmaceutical leader is looking to deploy the anti-counterfeiting and diversion detection solution into other product lines in different regions around the globe.
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