Leading Anti-Counterfeiting Strategies when Entering the Chinese Pharmaceutical Market

Posted by Eric Lam | Fri, Sep 08, 2017 @ 05:17 PM


Leading Anti-Counterfeiting Strategies when Entering the Chinese Pharmaceutical Market

Counterfeit drugs are spreading rapidly around the world

One of challenging problems faced by the pharma industry is securing the integrity and safety of medicines supply chain worldwide. It is estimated that 10% of medicines across the world are counterfeit, and 30 % of them in Asia Africa and Latin America are bogus. In addition, the volume of counterfeit drugs rose dramatically from 2.4 million to 20.7 million between 2011 and 2015, which was a nine-fold increase (PSM, 2016). Undoubtedly, counterfeit medicine is one of the “fastest growing” industries, and is a public health risk globally.
In 2017, China has emerged as the world’s second largest pharmaceutical market behind the United States but China is still the main country of provenance for counterfeit goods (International Trade Administration, 2016). Besides, ageing population is significantly increasing in China that results in a rapidly rising demand for medical treatment and related services. There will be a tremendous profit if pharma companies grasp the opportunity to enter the Chinese pharma market. But, with the counterfeit medicine problem mentioned before, are those firms ready to enter the pharma market in China?

Corporate Struggles in China

Several foreign companies entered the Chinese market but left with either disappointment or failure. For instance, companies likeAmazon and eBay have amassed tremendous sales around the world, except China. Possible reasons include:
1. Their products lack security features
Branded products without security features have encouraged the increase of product counterfeiting. In fact, it is found that many firms do not have comprehensive brand protection solutions due to the lack of understanding of its importance. As a result, their products fall easy victim to counterfeits.
2. Lack of legal protection of consumers and sellers for counterfeit products
Chinese consumers often worry for product safety and quality while brand owners are difficult to find who is selling the counterfeit goods, therefore, the brands cannot effectively fight against counterfeiting.
3. A lack of “trusted” partnerships with local Chinese business
Multinational companies doing business in China normally require anti-counterfeiting investigators to track down the sources of counterfeit goods but they can end up being swindled by the investigators themselves. For instance, one of the world’s largest consumer goods companies hired an investigator to track down counterfeit anti-dandruff shampoo in China, the Associated Press reported. Instead of finding real counterfeiters, the investigator Wang Yunming, set up a factory to produce counterfeit shampoo himself, which he “seized” and billed to the firm as a successful raid, according to two employees involved in the investigation who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of losing their jobs. (The Guardian, 2015).

TCMSecure Label Solution – Your comprehensive brand protection solution

NanoMatriX pays close attention to the development and trends of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) industry, with the aim of supporting pharmacy practitioners to manage counterfeit problems and product diversion issues.

Today, we are proud to introduce our latest and innovative anti-counterfeiting solution – TCMSecure Label Solution, which allows brand owners to strengthen consumer confidence while combating counterfeit attacks. There are THREE vital components integrated in this solution:

a) HSA Security Label - tamper-proof, visually appealing and secured with in-house design software

b) TrackMatriX® Lock - overt & covert QR code, track & trace, and offline verification

c) MatriX-Mark™ Taggant - covert & forensic feature, versatile application

Sample of TCMSecure Label

tcm label.jpg

Features of TCMSecure Label Solution at a Glance

TCMSecure Label Features.png

TCMSecure Label Solution features details

  1. Nearly Impossible to Copy

Every TrackMatriX® Lock QR code is embedded with unique UID. Even if the QR code is copied, it is impossible to capture the data without TrackMatriX® Inspector App.

  1. Tamper Evident

There will be a “VOID” residue remaining on the package substrate when the label is removed.

  1. Verify Quickly via Smartphone

TrackMatriX® Inspector App is provided for brand owners to immediately capture the covert information which cannot be read via a generic QR code reader.

  1. Check Medical Product Description

After scanning the TrackMatriX® Lock QR code, consumers can read the product details to get more familiar with the products.

  1. Track & Trace

TrackMatriX® Reporting & Analytics Portal facilitates brand owners to track the product location and specific time at any point in the delivery supply chain.

  1. Stop Parallel Trading

MatriX-Mark™ Taggant can only be detected and verified by Taggant HSD while it provides audio output that can indicate the source of pharma products.

  1. Legal Enforceable Evidence

MatriX-Mark™ Taggant with forensic security features which provide legal enforceable evidence of authenticity, as these features can only be verified in laboratories.

Proactive engagement and customer behavior analytics

NanoMatriX believes in a collaborative approach to develop a solution that will meet the clients’ requirement. We work closely with our clients to  understand their business, concerns and strategies for providing the ideal anti-counterfeiting solution. We are also proactive in highlighting new insights and suggestions that enhance the brand protection strategy with our team of experienced consultants and analysts.

Consumer behavior can be measured through big data analytics. Here, the TrackMatriX® Hosting and Reporting Service is designed to create true value for its brand owners, whereby all relevant data is gathered in real-time and consolidated for further analysis. Brand owners can use such analytics to refine their marketing campaigns.

Convenient way to verify the product authenticity

Scanning the TrackMatriX® Lock QR Code from the product package with smartphones is a convenient way to verify the authenticity of the pharmaceutical products. Next, consumersare brought to a verification website where they may input a security code below the QR code for further authentication. Ultimately, the result will be “Genuine” or “Counterfeit”. In addition, there are choices provided for consumers to learn more about pharma products, including the dosage, active ingredients and batch/registration number.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for further enquiries via



Topics: Security Label

Written by Eric Lam