As part of Dechra's strategy in the Food producing Animal Product (FAP) market, we entered the fast growing vaccines segment in October 2015 by acquiring the Croatian company, Genera d.d. It marketed a range of essential live poultry vaccines to the regional Adriatic countries and to a number of developing international markets thereby providing Dechra with a solid basis to enter the vaccine sector. Since the acquisition we have continued to build on this foundation, focusing on development and approval of this range in key European markets and subsequently expanding into additional international markets. With the growing worldwide emphasis on preventing diseases and reducing the use of antibiotics, we believe that this step is key to the future of Dechra's FAP business.
When we acquired Genera the core range of live poultry vaccines consisted of six products. At that time none of these had been approved for sale in the main European poultry production markets of the UK, Germany, France, Spain and Italy. Having spent time with the team in Croatia, evaluating the capabilities and production potential, we decided to focus on ensuring that the six key products gained approval in these key European markets.
Utilising the basis of the EU marketing registration, we were then able to gain marketing authorisations in the main poultry production countries in North Africa, the Middle East and Asia. In addition to the first six products, a further four were added to our development programme to ensure that our live poultry range meets the needs of veterinarians and farmers across all of these markets.
The development team in Zagreb has worked extremely hard and has successfully delivered products and registrations to the planned timelines. In 2016 the first European marketing authorisation was received for Avishield ND, used for the prevention of Newcastle disease in chickens and turkeys. Despite only having one product, we quickly discovered that veterinarians became enthusiastic about this new vaccine. Through clinical studies we had demonstrated that our product was more effective and safer to use than the established products from our competitors. We therefore proceeded to launch in Germany and Belgium, where we quickly gained high market shares despite not being able to offer a complete range. To date, we have succeeded in obtaining authorisation in all key European markets for an additional three vaccines for the prevention of infectious bronchitis, infectious bursal disease and an additional strain of Newcastle disease. Using the slogan 'Protection Evolved' we are now preparing to launch the complete range across Europe, and continue to develop our position in the international markets.