Being a leading pharmaceutical company in this part of Europe the Management acknowledges the importance of being a responsible player in society and therefore it considers it to be of utmost importance to fulfil its primary role – to ensure a sustainable supply of high quality, reliable and effective treatments for patients. Whilst doing this, we feel compelled to demonstrate care towards our employees and to other stakeholders of the Company in general. In light of the recommendations made and measures taken by the Hungarian Government we at Richter have also acted by introducing certain measures to protect our employees and to reduce the risk of any potential contagion.
Sustainability of the business
Having introduced a more focused operating management of our procurement chains we have managed to avoid to date any shortage of raw materials and other supplies. We are proud that we were able to ensure on all of our markets the timely delivery of all of our products. We cannot exclude, however that in parallel with a deepening of the crisis, additional costs may arise in the future given the sustained difficulties experienced in the procurement of raw materials and the transportation of both raw materials and finished products. While in person promotional activities have had to be ceased in practically all of our markets in an effort to reduce physical contact, we have successfully redirected these activities to online channels.
Care for employee health and well-being
Measures were first introduced as soon as 5 March 2020, the day after the first two cases of COVID-19 were officially announced by Hungarian authorities: precautionary measures as described by WHO guidelines were emailed to employees and posted in social areas, the sanitizing of which began immediately. Temporary travel bans were introduced to countries/regions affected by the epidemic at that date. The travel prohibitions were expanded as the international developments required, in accordance with changes applied to Hungarian border regulations. Measures required to achieve social distancing were applied to all social areas and employees who could fulfil their job requirements by remote access were encouraged to work remotely. Those at work were given face masks and sanitizers were placed in all social areas of the Company.
Home office work was extended in order to minimize in-house contacts. Employees who are required to come to work are offered per diem travel allowances in order to encourage the usage of private vehicles rather than public transportation.
Useful tips have been given to line managers and employees to manage remote work and to tackle the COVID-19 situation.
Psychological support has been offered to employees suffering from the COVID-19 situation.
A donation was made through Richter's own Wellbeing Foundation to support families in need.
Additionally Richter HR also organised a blood donation to support the Hungarian Blood Bank.
In our understanding companies are organic parts of society's tissue and their commitments extend beyond their business activities regulated by relevant legal standards. It was in this spirit that Richter responded immediately to a request from the Hungarian affiliate of UNICEF. As many families were caught unaware by the sudden increase in the need for IT solutions as public education switched into remote mode Richter donated equipment to such families. The company has been successfully organizing a nationwide screening and health education program for 10 years, in the framework of which it also provides significant donations to Hungarian health institutions. In view of the current emergency situation, Richter's management has decided to support all former participants (70 hospitals and clinics) of the Health City program with an additional donation of HUF 2 million each. Furthermore, members of Richter's Board of Directors and the Supervisory Board offered their one-month compensation, totalling HUF 6 million, to the Hungarian National Ambulance Service (OMSZ), which provides a critical role in the fight against the pandemic.
In Italy, Gedeon Richter provided financial support to Italian central pandemic hospitals via its local subsidiary based in Milan. In Poland, the manufacturing subsidiary Gedeon Richter Polska gave substantial financial assistance to the local Western Hospital in Grodzisk Mazowiecki to provide first-line equipment securing both physicians and patients. In Romania, Gedeon Richter offered financial aid to various healthcare facilities to procure personal protection equipment and testing capacities.
In a continuation of its established track record of transparent operations and proactive communication Richter informed its shareholders about the new legal measures governing the organization of its AGM in April 2020.
About Gedeon Richter
Gedeon Richter Plc. (www.richter.hu), headquartered in Budapest/Hungary, is a major pharmaceutical company in Central Eastern Europe, with an expanding direct presence in Western Europe, in China and in Latin America. Having reached a market capitalization of EUR 3.6 billion (USD 4.1 billion) by the end of 2019, Richter's consolidated sales were approximately EUR 1.6 billion (USD 1.7 billion) during the same year. The product portfolio of Richter covers many important therapeutic areas, including Women's Healthcare, Central Nervous System and Cardiovascular areas. Having the largest R&D unit in Central Eastern Europe, Richter's original research activity focuses on CNS disorders. With its widely acknowledged steroid chemistry expertise, Richter is a significant player in the Women's Healthcare field worldwide. Richter is also active in biosimilar product development.
For more information:
Katalin Ördög: +36 1 431 5680
Zsuzsa Beke: +36 1 431 4888