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Pandemic Year– 2020 creates new Healthcare and Pharma Billionaires; Even as existing Indian Billionaires’ mint money

The year 2020 could very well be christened as the year for the Healthcare and the Pharma sector. While the year proved to be drab and challenging for the economy and businesses spanning across all industries, things were not at all bad for the Healthcare and the Pharma sector.

Owing to the Coronavirus pandemic, the healthcare and pharma sectors came under tremendous pressure, but it was also the most rewarded as it saw on the horizon the emergence of seven new billionaire promoters in the year of the pandemic.


As the country and the rest of the world was hit by the ‘newness’ of the virus that created havoc in the lives of individuals and impacted the economies of all countries, healthcare workers and pharma companies were put in the spotlight, both for the work and the responsibility they needed to shoulder.

However, the challenges faced have been equally rewarded; as many as 17 promoters in the Healthcare and pharma space have risen to the country’s billionaire status. The total wealth there 17 billionaires increased by 61%, and up from the last ten years who collectively held $60 billion or Rs 4.35 lakh crore by the end of the year.


The Movers and Shakers

Some of the new additions are –

  • Premchand Godha of IPCA Labs improved his ranking from 83 to 58th richest promoter with a massive YOY growth taking his net worth to Rs 12,805 crore by Dec 2020.
  • Apollo Hospital’s Prathap C Reddy saw his net worth up to Rs 10,340 crore. 
  • Mannalal Agarwal of Ajanta Pharma’s registered a net worth of Rs 8,550 crore
  • Natco Pharma’s VC Nannapaneni net worth rose to Rs 8570 crore.


The above were not the only ones making a profit; the bull run in the Health care sector and the Pharma stocks also benefitted – 

Sunil S Lalbhai, promoter of Atul, whose wealth increased by 59% YOY and by December end stood at Rs 8,550 crore, making him the 78th richest promoter in the list.

Deepak Nitrite and Alkyl Amines were other benefits from the bull run in this sector. 


However, the biggest gainer Murali Divi of Divi’s Lab’s, his wealth doubled to Rs 53,000 crore by the year-end, taking him from 28th to 16th richest promoter in India. 


The other big gainers were PVR Reddy and KN Reddy of Aurobindo Pharma with a net worth of Rs 28,000 crore and Shivraj Patel of Cadila Pharma with a net worth of Rs 37,500 crore.


The continues rise of the Pharma Sector

Meanwhile, India’s pharmaceutical industry saw a significant increase in exporting drugs in the first half of the current fiscal year. 

Covid -19 pandemic induced demand saw a spike in demand for pharma products and hoarding of supplies by some nations due to the production disruptions.

The sector is also seeing a spike in demand for pharmaceutical ingredients since several countries are actively engaging in customer diversification away from China. 

The move is also due to the persistent quality issues and disruptions in Chinese supply in the earlier part of the year. This has provided the opportunity for Indian players to strike in and take advantage of the situation.

The pharma industry is said to witness further gains as several Indian players have got in agreements with Gilead Sciences to manufacture and export Remdesivir. 


With the gradual easing of the lockdown and economic activities opening up, coupled with the demand for pharma products as well as bulk drugs in exports and domestic markets, it is expected that the revenue growth will go up. 

This is likely to aid the revenue growth in the next fiscal, and a ramp-up in specialty products and biosimilar exports and strong domestic sales are maintained.


Indian Billionaires’ Wealth Surges 

As per reports, the super-rich are laughing all the way to the bank as their wealth increased by a third in the four months even as the marginal struggled with their incomes due to the pandemic.

According to the Billionaires Insights Report, 2020, published by UBS and PwC, between April and July 2020, the combined net worth of the countries super-rich rose and surged 90% since 2009 to $422.9 billion.

No surprise, Mukesh Ambani made it to the list of Ultra-rich and became the 10th richest in the world. He became 73% richer in the pandemic year due to the increase in the companies stocks because of the massive fundraising by Jio Platforms and Reliance Retail.

As compared to the rest of the world – Indian Billionaires’ wealth rose by 35%, the other competitors higher than India being China, France, and Brazil. 


Apart from the Healthcare and Pharma sector, the other industries that saw the maximum rise were Tech and Media.

Globally, total billionaire wealth touched $10.2 trillion as of July 2020, which is a newer high, though the maximum increase was registered in the tech, pharma, and media sectors while the other sectors struggled to cope.


What is expected in the year 2021

According to Nomura, India is expected to the fastest-growing Asian economy in 2021. It pegs the Indian economy to grow faster than China and Singapore at 9.9 percent compared to 9% and 7.5%, respectively. 

  • It has forecast renewed activities and a boost in the manufacturing sector
  • Pharmaceutical will continue their upward spiral as India is the largest provider of generic medicine globally. By volume, it is the third-largest pharmaceutical industry globally.
  • E-Commerce will have an enlarged scope as major e-commerce players have reinforced their logistics capabilities to meet the growing demand as consumers have shifted to online purchasing.
  • Information Technology spending in India is likely to increase at 6% in 2021 and touch the US$81.9 billion mark as the pandemic forced many organizations to look and invest in their IT infrastructure and security as ‘work from home’ becomes more common.

Basis the above forecast, one can only imagine the increase and the billionaire status that many of the players in the above sectors are likely to achieve. We might have a new list of Billionaires by the end of 2021.











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