Bojan Dolenc assumes leadership of Lek in Prevalje
- After 13 years of successful leadership of Lek Prevalje, Zlatko Ajd hands the reins over to Bojan Dolenc.
- Quality and cost efficiency keys to further development of Lek Prevalje.
- As a global organization, Sandoz offers employees interesting professional challenges in different environments.
On June 1, Bojan Dolenc took over the position of Head of Lek Prevalje. Until then, he had been Head Solid Forms Production at Lek in Ljubljana. He succeeds Zlatko Ajd, who after 13 years of directing Lek Prevalje and a total of almost 30 years working for Lek in Slovenia has assumed the leadership of Sandoz plant in Johannesburg, South Africa.
The production unit in Prevalje, which manufactures Lek’s leading product (a wide-spectrum antibiotic – a combination of amoxicillin and clavulanic acid) maintains its significant role within Sandoz global production network through high productivity and constant improvements. Given Sandoz exceptionally challenging internal competition environment, continuous proof that we are capable of producing at high levels of quality and cost efficiency will also be extremely important for the further development of the site.
“This is an important fact, since in the current exceptionally competitive environment in the generic pharmaceuticals industry only the very best and most efficient survive. Year after year we strengthen our position at Lek Prevalje, among other things through constant increases in the production volume of one of Lek’s most important products, which allows us to constantly improve and to invest in know-how and technological modernization,” said Zlatko Ajd.
The site is also planning more investments and improvements In the future. “We are introducing for example lean production. We use the latest information tools in our work. In order to reach a critical mass of production volume, we are expanding capacities in the existing buildings, which requires new investments. We also remain, as always, a socially responsible company, closely connected with the local environment,” said Bojan Dolenc upon taking over the position of Head of Lek Prevalje.
Career development at Sandoz
After nearly 30 years of working at Lek, Zlatko Ajd has accepted a significant challenge and taken a step forward in the development of his career. For the next three years he will head Sandoz plant in South Africa. “I enjoy new professional challenges, and this will certainly be a considerable test, as I will be working in a completely different cultural environment, which is always an important factor in leading a company. This is however a normal career development process in a global company like Novartis. Multinational companies allow us to work in different countries, which offers great opportunities for career development and gaining experience by working in different environments,” said Zlatko Ajd.
Lek Prevalje currently employs around 200 people, who work on nearly 10,500 m2 of covered surface. More than 90 percent of employees live in the Meziska and Upper Drava Valleys, and more than half are women. The beginnings of Lek Prevalje reach back to 1978, when the pharmaceutical and dental products plant there became a part of Lek. In 1988 in Prevalje, production began of a wide-spectrum antibiotic, a combination of amoxicillin and clavulanic acid, which remains Lek’s most important product to this day and also ranks as one of Sandoz’s leading products, and the production volume is constantly increasing. In 2006, 23 million packaged products were sold in more than 60 countries around the world, and the end of November 2007 saw the production of the 100,000th palette of this leading product manufactured in the new plant. The success of the product and the Prevalje site are further demonstrated by the fact that production volume has more than doubled since 2003.
Lek Prevalje is closely connected with the local environment and works together with the local community every year. They hold open house days, where they present their work and responsibility for the environment to the local community. They provide numerous donations in order to assist local associations and organizations in their operations – they enabled the purchase of a new fire engine for the Prevalje Volunteer Fire Department, snowmobiles and CPR dummies for the Prevalje Mountain Rescue Service, installed an automated external defibrillator at their site, which is available to the public, work with the Prevalje Elementary School and Elderly People’s Homes, and have sponsored the Prevalje Volleyball Club for many years.
Lek, a Sandoz company, is one of the pillars of leading world generics company Sandoz. It operates as a global development center for products and technologies, as a global manufacturing center for active pharmaceutical ingredients and medicines, as a competence center for the development of vertically integrated products, as a Sandoz competence center in the field of development and manufacturing of biopharmaceutical products and as a supply center for the markets of CEE, SEE and CIS, sales Slovenia and sales services for Sandoz’s global markets. Lek d.d. employs about 2,820 people and achieved total sales of USD 904 million in 2006. For further information please consult http://www.lek.si
Sandoz, a Division of the Novartis group, is a global leader in the field of generic pharmaceuticals, offering a wide array of high-quality, affordable products that are no longer protected by patents. Sandoz has a portfolio of more than 840 active substances in over 5 000 forms worldwide. Key product groups include antibiotics, treatments for central nervous system disorders, gastrointestinal medicines, cardiovascular treatments and hormone therapies. Sandoz develops, produces and markets these drugs along with pharmaceutical and biotechnological active substances and anti-infectives. In addition to the strong organic growth in recent years, Sandoz has made a series of acquisitions including Lek (Slovenia), Sabex (Canada), Hexal (Germany) and EonLabs (U.S.) and sells its products in more than 110 countries. In 2006, Sandoz employed around 21,000 people worldwide and posted sales of USD 6 billion.
Novartis AG (NYSE: NVS) is a world leader in offering medicines to protect health, cure disease and improve well-being. Our goal is to discover, develop and successfully market innovative products to treat patients, ease suffering and enhance the quality of life. Novartis is the only company with leadership positions in both patented and generic pharmaceuticals. We are strengthening our medicine-based portfolio, which is focused on strategic growth platforms in innovation-driven pharmaceuticals, high-quality and low-cost generics and leading self-medication OTC brands. In 2006, the Group’s businesses achieved net sales of USD 37.0 billion and net income of USD 7.2 billion. Approximately USD 5.4 billion was invested in R&D. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Novartis Group companies employ approximately 101,000 people and operate in over 140 countries around the world. For more information, please visit http://www.novartis.com.
This press release contains statements and conclusions based on projections of Lek’s future business operations. These estimates are derived from the best information currently available. In case these forecasts prove unreliable, the actual results could prove different from those projected.
For further information contact:
Katarina Klemenc Dinjaški
Lek Pharmaceuticals d.d.
Phone: + 386 1 580 22 43
Fax: + 386 1 580 24 32