Novartis India Limited (NIL) is a subsidiary of Swiss giant Novartis, the world's second largest pharmaceutical company was incorporated on 13 December 1947. The Company is focused on manufacturing and marketing of drugs, pharmaceutical products and formulations for consumer healthcare and animal healthcare; it operates in four segments such as Pharmaceuticals, Generics, Over the Trade Counter and Animal Health.
The origin of Novartis is linked to the origin of three distinct companies namely Geigy, Ciba, and Sandoz. The history of Geigy goes back to the middle of the 18th century, Ciba was founded around 1860, and Sandoz was set-up in 1886. In 1970 Ciba and Geigy merged to form Ciba-Geigy Ltd. Sandoz and Ciba-Geigy Ltd continued as separate entities for the next 25 years. In 1996, in one of the largest corporate mergers in history Sandoz and Ciba-Geigy Ltd. joined to form Novartis. In the year 1998, the company had set-up the Novartis Institute for Functional Genomics.
During the year 2000, Novartis acquired the products Famvir and Vectavir/Denavir from SmithKline Beecham also in the same year, the company started to provide treatment to leprosy patients worldwide through World Health Organisation (WHO). Also in 2000, NIL had started JEET (Joint Effort to Eradicate Tuberculosis) with the aim of increasing awareness among TB patents and to involve doctors more actively in the fight against disease. After a year, Novartis Respiratory Research Centre, the largest of its kind in the world, was opened in Horsham (UK) in 2001 and also during the same year Novartis had entered into a partnership with the WHO to stem the spread of malaria in areas of the world were the diseases in endemic.
The Glivec, a drug was launched by the company in April of the year 2002 in India. The Company bagged TERI corporate social responsibility award for the year 2002-03. Novartis united its generics businesses under one single global brand in the name of Sandoz during the year 2003 and also in the same year, the company was granted Exclusive Marketing Rights (EMR) for Glivec. In the year of 2005, the company and Astex Therapeutics formed an alliance to focus on novel cell cycle anti-cancer drugs and also NIL had debuted Citro-macalvit & Trioptal as new products for the year.
During the year 2006 alone Novartis had spent about USD 755 million on research into neglected diseases and various patient-access programs. In August of the same year 2006, the company had filed a petition in the Madras High Court challenging the rejection of the Glivec patent and the same petition was dismissed by the Madras high court in August of the year 2007. In the identical year of 2007, NIL sold its Medical Nutrition business to Nestle. The Company had launched a new marketing initiative on National scale in September of the year 2008 named Arogya Parivar targeting the healthcare needs of villagers.