I think these words are good enough to start a brief description of the life of João Marques de Paulo. What led a boy born in the countryside, who got his first pair of shoes on his feet already as a young man, and with almost no studies, to become a great family and business leader?
I believe it is the sum of all the values mentioned above, in addition to a great deal of necessity. João Marques de Paulo, who had lost his mother at a very young age and who was mistreated by his stepmother, runs away from home with his 5 brothers from the village called Carmo do Cajim – MG. Together they go to Belo Horizonte to start their journey.
Newspaper seller on the street during the day, popcorn seller at night at the cinema’s door, these were his first steps in merchant activity. Waiter, bricklayer, electrician. These were some of his activities, until one day, advised by an uncle of his wife, he sought employment as a Medical Propagandist.
More than sixty years ago, working at the Instituto Pinheiros, the largest Brazilian laboratory at the time, João Marques de Paulo goes on to assume the post in Vale do Jequitinhonha, in the northern region of Minas Gerais, one of the poorest regions in Brazil to this today.
In the beginning, starting his train journeys and continuing on the back of a donkey, he soon stood out as one of the greatest PSC (Propagandist, Salesman and Collector) of the company. This had been revealed by the newspapers of the Instituto Pinheiros of the time, which he kept throughout all his life, with great pride. Always using his great ability to persuade, João Marques de Paulo applied strategies of approach with doctors, who soon differentiated him from his professional colleagues.
The one he most liked to tell was that on all trips, he brought his suitcase full of copies of the magazine “O Cruzeiro”, (a mixture of Veja magazine with Revista Caras of the present day), which rarely arrived to those distant places, to give them away to the wives of the doctors he visited.
At that time, it was common for the doctor to invite the propagandist to have meals at his own home. In his farewell there was always the question he most expected: “Mr. João, when are you coming back?”
To which he immediately answered:
“I don’t know, your husband is prescribing very little of my products, and the company is trying to fire me.” He was making the move.
He liked to tell you about a doctor who came to talk to him and said:
“João Marques, what do you do? I can’t stand my wife and mother-in-law asking me if I’m prescribing your products anymore!”.
He stayed for 8 years in this company. Later, he went to work in the laboratory Le Petit, where he stayed for 4 years. After 12 years in the profession, he started his business career, founding a drug distributor called Farmazonte, in BH. Then, he started his activity in São Paulo, and founded the Joma and Sintoquímica laboratories, in the 60s. At the end of these years, motivated by the serious illness of his wife, he moved from São Paulo and left the sector for two years. These were difficult times, and João Marques de Paulo ended up losing almost all the capital he had managed to accumulate during the period.
He returned to São Paulo. In 1970, with the money he still had left, he bought the Prata laboratory, a company founded in 1936 and that manufactured 5 products: Prata Elixir, Prata Tonic, Prata Digestive, Prata Stone Break and Sanoderma Ferraz. Then began what we now know as União Química Farmacêutica Nacional. A Brazilian company with more than 80 years of history in the human pharmaceutical market.
In 2000, União Química Farmacêutica Nacional decided to expand its business, and a new business unit emerged – Agener União Saúde Animal.
With more than 15 years of age, it is already one of the largest companies in the veterinary pharmaceutical sector in the country. Active in the Pet, Large Animals, Animal Reproduction (Tecnopec) and Biotechnology (Bthek) segments, aiming to develop, produce and supply quality products that contribute to the well-being and improvement of health, society and animals.
In this way, União Química and Agener União, now headed by Fernando de Castro Marques, seek to continue a trajectory that is already very successful, always following the path of excellence and transparency in all their projects.
É a Divisão veterinária da União Química Farmacêutica Nacional, empresa brasileira com mais de 85 anos de história no mercado farmacêutico.
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