1. Industry
Send to a Friend via Email

Your suggestion is on its way!

An email with a link to:


was emailed to:

Thanks for sharing About.com with others!

You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

9 Top Generic Drug Companies

Global companies leading the exansion of generic sales worldwide



A Teva factory in Jerusalem


Just a few years ago generic drug makers owned just a small slice of the pharmaceutical drug market. Today generics are a formidable segment of the industry and are on track to surpass branded drugs in sales value as well as sales volume within a few years, according to industry analysts.

According to a report by GlobalData, Indian generic manufacturers are doing particularly well in a marketplace once dominated by branded blockbusters. For example, India-based firms Glenmark, Sun Pharmaceuticals and Ranbaxy had year-to-year revenue growth ranging from nearly 72 percent to 33 percent in 2012, according to the analytics firm.

In the United States -- where about 80 percent of all scripts written are for generics -- and traditional markets in Europe, multinational branded firms feeling losses from the patent cliff, health care reform legislation and austerity, are forming partnerships with their generic competitors to tap the expansion in generic sales.

The Top Global Generic Drug Makers

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.

  • Headquarters: Israel
  • 2012 sales: $10.4 billion generics; $1.3 billion net revenue
  • Year-over-year growth: 19.6 percent
  • Employees: 12,000 in North America; 46,000 worldwide
  • Facilities: 75 pharmaceutical and API manufacturing sites
  • Products: Teva launched more than 250 generics in 2012. In 2013 it has announced plans to launch generic versions of Synbyax, Opana, Diprivan, Maxalt, Carbatrol ER, Gabitril and TriCor.

According to company literature, 1.5 million prescriptions for Teva pharmaceuticals are written each day in the United States and 2.7 million in the European Union.

Sandoz, the generics division of Novartis

  • Headquarters: Germany
  • 2012 sales: $8.7 billion
  • Year-over-year growth: -8.7 percent decline from 2011
  • Employees: 25,000 employees in 140 countries
  • Facilities: 30 manufacturing sites
  • Products: Top-selling products include antibiotics, central nervous system disorders treatments, gastrointestinal medicines, cardiovascular treatments and hormone therapies.
Sandoz attributed it's sales decline to increased competition in the United States for enoxaparin.

Actavis Inc. (formerly Watson Pharmaceuticals)

  • International Headquarters: Switzerland
  • 2012 sales: $5.91 billion
  • Year-over-year growth: 29 percent
  • Employees: 10,000 worldwide
  • Facilities: 30 manufacturing facilities on five continents, 17 global R&D centers Products: Actavis has launched numerous generics in at least 40 countries. Thirteen launches were exclusive to the United States, according to the company.
  • Products include: generic Adderall XR, generic Lovenox, generic Sanctura XR

Actavis also has a long-term strategy to compete globally in biosimilars. Through a collaborative agreement with Amgen, the pharma plans to develop and market biosimilar versions of Herceptin, Avastin, Rituxan/Mab Thera, and Erbitux starting in 2017.

Mylan Inc.

  • Headquarters: United States
  • 2012 sales: $5.8 billion
  • Year-over-year growth: 10.9 percent
  • Employees: 20,000 worldwide
  • Facilities: Operations in the United States, Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East and Africa
  • Products: About 365 different generic products sold in the United States, more than 1,100 worldwide. It was the first to offer a generic version of Duragesic (fentanyl transdermal patch) and the first generic class II narcotic transdermal patch.

Mylan has grown and expanded its global reach through the acquisition of Matrix and Merck's former generic business.


  • Headquarters: United States
  • 2012 sales: $4.1 billion
  • Year-over-year growth: 0.9 percent
  • Employees: 16,000 worldwide
  • Facilities: Six manufacturing facilities in the United States and eight international sites
  • Products: Generic acute-care and oncology injectables, intensive-care proprietary pharmaceuticals and biosimilars


  • Headquarters: France
  • 2012 sales: €34,947 million overall, €1,844 million in generics
  • Year-over-year growth: 0.5 percent
  • Employees: 110,000 employees in 100 countries
  • Facilities: Manufacturing facilities in 29 countries, including two in the United States and one in Canada.
  • Products: Generic products focus on cardiovascular, female health, respiratory, anti-infective, anti-fungals, urology, central nervous system, pain and gastrointestinal treatments.

Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd.

  • Headquarters: India
  • 2012 sales: Rs.122,529 Million ($2.3 billion)
  • Year-over-year growth: 23 percent in rupee terms
  • Employees: 14,600
  • Facilities: Manufacturing operations in eight countries and a presence in 43 countries
  • Products: Generic versions of Lipitor, Actos, Caduet and Evoxac

Ranbaxy, India's largest pharmaceutical company, is part of the Daiichi Sankyo Co. Ltd. group of Japan.

Aspen Pharmacare Holding Ltd.

  • Headquarters: South Africa
  • 2012 sales: R15,3 billion
  • Year-over-year growth: 23 percent
  • Employees: 3,144
  • Facilities: 17 manufacturing sites, 16 sales and distribution centers
  • Products: Foxair, RV Tribuss

In 2012, Aspen acquired several of GlaxoSmithKline's brands for emerging markets. Aspen is South Africa's larget pharma, and in 2012, EvaluatePharma ranked it as the ninth largest generic company in the world.

STADA Arzneimittel AG

  • Headquarters: Germany
  • 2012 sales: €1,213 million in generic sales, €1,837.5 million overall
  • Year-over-year growth: 7 percent
  • Employees: 7,814
  • Products: Generics represent 66 percent of sales

Sources: GlobalData, EvaluatePharma, company reports. Sales figures cited represent the latest available.

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.