Halal Industry

She leads the way in halal pharma: ‘There’s no glass ceiling, the sky’s the limit’ - Siti Sa’diah Sh Bakir

Women are active drivers of the growth and success of the global Islamic economy. This story is part of the Successful Women in the Islamic Economy series published in the State of the Global Islamic Economy 2020/21 report that you can DOWNLOAD HERE


Tan Sri Datin Paduka Siti Sa’diah Sh Bakir has contributed significantly to Malaysia’s healthcare industry.

A uniquely driven woman, she rose through the ranks to become Managing Director of KPJ Healthcare in 1993 and in the next year steered the company to its public listing.

After retiring in 2012, Tan Sri Siti served as Corporate Advisor at KPJ Healthcare for two years before joining its board. She also had the time and dedication to serve as Director of other public listed companies, including Al-‘Aqar Healthcare REIT and DuoPharma.

Now a non-independent, non-executive chairperson of the board of DuoPharma – a leading pharma company in Malaysia that has a strong focus on halal – Tan Sri Siti is still driven to succeed, and helping the company adapt to the evolving needs of the market.

A key ongoing development is DuoPharma’s focus on digitalisation, said the leader. “Business will be driven by technology as an enabler and as something that facilitates the way you do your business,” she said.

Tan Sri Siti also highlights the need for a strong foundation in good governance, saying that DuoPharma has walked the talk with several critical moves:

  • Apart from governance requirements set by Bursa Malaysia, where the company is listed, DuoPharma also has a medical advisory committee to advise the board on medical and clinical product development and related matters.
  • Its halal board committee reports to the Board regularly on all halal matters.
  • It is included in Bursa Malaysia’s FTSE4Good – that measures the performance of public listed companies demonstrating strong Environmental, Social and Governance practices

A woman in the top ranks of the pharma sector is rare but Tan Sri Siti believes that there is no glass ceiling. “Don’t believe in a glass ceiling,” she says to women. “You can achieve as high as where you want to be.”

Read more of the interview with Tan Sri Siti in the State of the Global Islamic Economy 2020/21 report that you can DOWNLOAD HERE.

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