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Fighting spirit defies economic gloom over euro


Fast moving events surrounding the fate of the euro may have overtaken this column by the time you read it. But one aspect that will not have been overtaken is the West Midlands manufacturing industry and its expectations.

Members of the G20 and EU

have been shown up by claiming that things had moved forward to resolve the mess that Europe and the rest of the developed world are going through. We know they did not move forward.

So what does it mean, in a

knock-on sense, for the government’s regional growth fund which in the West Midlands will create 4,000 new jobs directly and 40,000 new jobs indirectly. Manufacturing has become more

high-tech but do we have a government that really understands how important it is to not just to create jobs but to also preserve existing jobs and skills. As that technology moves forward it will become even more complex and important and there needs to be the base to meet that challenge.

‘Our own government is planning for the possible break-up of the euro’

Listening to the solutions of European politicians is akin watching ferrets fighting in a sack. There is no cohesion beyond what is seen as their imperative political target. Our own government is planning

for the possible break-up of the euro which would cause problems for UK manufacturing. Despite the gloom,

manufacturing in the West Midlands still has many good things going for it, particularly in the automotive industry. But talking to numerous managements with SMEs there is a strong undercurrent that believes the future of manufacturing companies rests with their own enterprise, initiatives and endeavour and not with political theory. What is still evident is that

manufacturing is still capable of fighting its corner to survive..

James O’Brien runs Writing and PR for Business: and

8 CHAMBERLINK NOVEMBER 2011 Amar Nawaz and Dr Qamar Nawaz with the Rolls Royce of mixing vessels, the GUISTI

Drugs firm success is just what the doctor ordered


legislation has to be applauded. Unfortunately there are very few pharmaceutical


manufacturers in Britain, but off the beaten track in inner city Birmingham a small company is thriving in these difficult times. In 2008, Sterling Pharmaceuticals Ltd was set up by

two brothers, Qamar and Amar Nawaz, who are both trained as pharmacists. The company supplies small quantities of drugs, to pharmacies and hospitals throughout the UK.

‘38 NHS Trusts are buying one product from us and we are the only manufacturer making it’

Chief executive Dr Qamar Nawaz explained that adult tablets are not always easy to take or in the right dosage for children or the elderly, so the company provide small doses in liquid forms. He said: “We operate with small to medium size runs of products and have to abide by the guidelines of

ed tape and legislation are the two key issues which businesses complain about but in the pharmaceutical industry UK

paediatric directives from the government. Thirty eight NHS Trusts are buying one product from us and we are the only manufacturer making it. We also supply Harley Street and can provide a three-hour service. “Because of the heavy regulations it takes a long

time for our own products to come to the market. To achieve the necessary licences such as EU GMP (European Good Manufacturing Practice) inspectors are here for two to three days and go through everything.” Sterling has achieved the appropriate certification to launch a new Vitamin D supplement in liquid form. Director, Amar Nawaz says that research shows that 90 per cent of the population are Vitamin D deficient. He said: “There are very few foods which have

Vitamin D in them in the quantities needed. Steriferal is suitable for vegetarians and children and the elderly. Our motto is that everything we manufacture should be good enough for our families to use.” Sterling employs a highly qualified workforce of 20

people, five with PhDs. The company operates from two sites in Birmingham with one concentrating more on research and development. Amar Nawaz said: “Our long term plan is to move

into a site which is five times bigger which will enable us to increase our range of products. We will then be able to employ more people.”


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