Soap & Sunscreen

With a 9:15 am start this morning, the group was very happy to sleep in, and catch up on some needed sleep. Everyone seemed eager to start the day because we were having a site visit at, Andrómaco, a pharmaceutical company. The company is based in Buenos Aires, and focuses on creating products that help with skin care. Some of their products include: sunscreen, ointments, moisturizers, soap, lotion, and other topical medications. They also have a small line of pills and other oral medications.

Our group visited their main factory where their topical medications are made, and we were able to get a tour of the factory. The tour was lead by some of the managers, and they explained to our group how exactly the factory works. They explained what kind of products they make, how the products are made, what kind of machines and raw materials are needed for their products, how they distribute their products, and the importance of efficiency in the factory. On the tour they gave us a lot of information, and even explained some of the challenges they face as a pharmaceutical company.

My guide, mentioned how one of the biggest challenges that has affected the company has been inflation. With inflation going up, it has become hard to import the raw materials needed for their products. Many of their raw materials come from Brazil, and with the inflation problems that Argentina has today, it makes it costly to purchase the materials. He explained how everyone in the pharmaceutical business in Argentina is facing the same problem, which has forced everyone in the business to raise their market prices. However, because everyone is in a similar situation, competition has stayed fairly the same. He also touched on the idea that for Andrómaco, and other pharmaceutical companies, a lot of challenges come from simply branding or reputation.

He said that for Andrómaco, 30% of their production is given away for free as samples, because they need to advertise their products. These samples are placed in magazines or given to physicians to give to patients. My guide said that anyone can come up with their own sort of product, but you need to create a brand and reputation that attracts people to continuously use their product. During the tour he even tried to advertise a cream that takes away sores or rashes, and talked about how everyone and their families use it.

At the end of the tour everyone in our group was given sunscreen and a bar of soap. I was kind of grateful for the bar of soap because it saves me from having to hit up the store to buy one. Thanks Andrómaco!

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