Serum Institute of India, or the fall of a global pharmacy giant

STORY – Adar Poonawalla, CEO of the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer, is accused of failing to deliver and increasing prices.

Adar Poonawalla, now a refugee in London, became involved in the fight against the Covid pandemic early on, taking great risks. Francis Mascarenhas/REUTERS

On 28 November, Adar Poonawalla welcomes Prime Minister Narendra Modi to a Covid vaccine production line in Pune, western India, at the headquarters of the Serum Institute of India (SII). Alongside him were his father, Cyrus, founder of SII, the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer, and his wife, Natasha, the company’s number two, who chronicled his worldly life on his Instagram account. This visit is a consecration for the 40-year-old, nicknamed in India the “prince of vaccines”.

Six months later, the flamboyant boss is accused of failing to deliver on all his promises and making a profit on the backs of the Indian state. In particular, he is accused of having practiced different selling prices in the central government, the states and private hospitals in the country. Fearing for his safety, he took refuge in London, where his wife and two children live in a house in the Mayfair district, rented for 58,000 euros a week.

Source: Serum Institute of India, ou la chute d’un géant mondial de la pharmacie (

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