30-Mar-2012

China faces up to pharma talent wars

Abstract

Rapid expansion means that high level candidates for senior management posts in Chinese pharma are at a premium. Chinese start-ups are willing to pay a significant cost to attract high-level candidates from multinationals. Meanwhile, the multinationals are instead pursuing talent in research and development.

In a booming market, high level candidates for senior management posts in Chinese pharma are at a premium. Wang Fangqing reports from Shanghai.

Strong government support combined with a huge domestic market has China’s already booming pharmaceutical industry undeniably heading towards an even more prosperous future. However, while companies are eager to expand in China, they all seem to be coming up against the same challenge – finding the right employees.

Suzhou-based biopharmaceutical company NeuPharma is one example of the crop of emerging Chinese start-ups willing to pay a significant cost to attract high-level candidates from multinationals for senior management positions, such as general manager and sales director.

‘We have seen more and more Chinese professionals with overseas experience over the years – but still, as a start-up company based in a second tier city, it’s not easy for us to find top talent, as they tend to go for big firms in first tier cities like Shanghai and Beijing,’ said NeuPharma ceo Dr Qian Xiangping, himself a returnee to the Chinese pharmaceutical industry after obtaining extensive experience in the US.

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