Gubba to set up more pharma-compliant facilities

Hyderabad: Hyderabad-based cold storage company Gubba Cold Storage, which currently has three pharma and biotech compliant and one multi-product facility also catering to pharma, is adding two more facilities one each at Annaram in Telangana and the other in Aurangabad in Maharashtra. The two facilities will be ready by March this year.

In Annaram, the company is investing Rs 30 crore to create a greenfield facility. In Aurangabad, the company is converting an existing facility to make it pharma-compliant by enhancing capacity. There are also plans to enhance capacity in the existing four facilities with additional investment in the coming months. The company had been developing pharma-dedicated storage facilities for the last three years.

Gubba is getting WHO GDP certification, custom-bound warehouse for exports and imports and is planning for EU GDP, C-TPAT (Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism) certification this year.

Gubba Kiran, CEO of Gubba Cold Storage told Telangana Today, “While most of the cold storage companies have multi-product facilities, Gubba has been creating pharma-compliant facilities meeting different temperature needs. We have three temperature zones (-20 degrees, 2-8, and 15-25 degrees) under one roof in one facility that we are coming up in Annaram, which will be operational by mid-January, a first-of-its-kind facility in Telangana and one of the finest pan-India.”

“We will be having 10,000 pallet capacity for vaccines by March, of which Annaram will alone have 6,500 pallet capacity. We also plan to create new storage facilities in Mumbai and Visakhapatnam by 2021-22 that will focus on pharma,” he added.

The company is in active discussion with the State and Central governments, vaccine makers, and reefer logistics companies to plan and streamline the supply chain for Covid-19 vaccine distribution across India.

When asked how the cold storage sector is placed to meet the Covid vaccine scenario, he said, “India has about 10,000 cold storage facilities across India, but less than 0.5 percent of them are vaccine-compliant. We need to have more WHO GDP approved facilities, temperature indicators, and a robust inventory system. India can gear up to the need and it is not rocket science to convert the existing facilities and repurpose them to meet the vaccine needs.”

Currently, pharma contributes about 10 percent of the company’s business and in the next few years, this will go up to 30 percent, added Kiran. There are also growing opportunities in the food sector, while the company will continue to enhance business in its seed storage facilities catering to the seed and agriculture companies.

“Seed has been the largest segment for Gubba all these years and the company is expanding its horizon into pharma and biotech space,” he added.

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