Merck, based in Germany, plans to considerably expand its presence on the African continent over the next five years and is counting on the region’s entrepreneurial spirit and innovation power for growth.
Karl-Ludwig Kley, chairman of the executive board and chief executive officer of Merck, said, “We intend to more than double our workforce in Africa and we also aim to more than double our sales on the continent by 2020.”
The company currently has around 400 employees across 10 African countries and aims to increase this number to around 1,000 by 2020. Merck’s largest location is South Africa, from where the company also steers business in South-East Africa including Kenya, Angola and Mozambique.
Merck has delivered healthcare services in Africa since 1897. With a population rising faster than in any other global market and a growing middle class, the company is increasingly tapping into the continent’s innovative spirit to create health awareness and help respond to unmet medical needs.
In addition to selling products in Africa, Merck also aims to tap into the continent’s potential for cutting-edge innovation, which can shape Africa’s future and inspire solutions to tackle global challenges. Among other things, Merck has started an online and mobile platform for diabetes risk assessment, apps for diabetes and fertility patients and a mobile platform for doctors, all of which were developed in Africa.