Cyrus Poonawalla's Serum Institute has signed a joint venture with US company Codagenix to work on a coronavirus cure
Cyrus Poonawalla is renowned for his flamboyance Credit: Sanjit Das/Bloomberg
He may not be a household name in Britain but from his baronial-style boardroom overlooking his family’s stud farm in western India, Cyrus Poonawalla oversees a global vaccine empire which directly touches the lives of billions of people.
With an estimated fortune of $9.8bn (£7.46bn), Poonawalla, 78, is the founder and chairman of Serum Institute of India (SII) – the world’s biggest manufacturer of vaccines by number of doses produced, equivalent to about 1.5 billion shots per year.
Now, as the world scrambles to mount an effective response in the battle against coronavirus, Mr Poonawalla hopes his company will play a critical role scaling up production once a vaccine has been developed and declared fit for human use.
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