Our Story

Milan, May 24th, 1947.

Physiologist Rodolfo Ferrari and microbiologist Carlo Callerio founded SPA - Società Prodotti Antibiotici (Antibiotic Products Company), with the aim of producing one of the first Italian penicillins in the immediate post-war period.

Since then SPA believes in the constant evolution of the relationship between drug and patient, through the study of concrete and effective solutions, in line with the changing times and the new needs that emerge.

Year after year, from generation to generation, that of SPA is a story capable of looking back and pointing forward, aware of its path and determined to continue it by putting the focus on "taking care" of public health.

A story that speaks of solid roots and continuous growth, which recalls where it was born but does not fear transformations.

The milestones of SPA.


“Sign the Reconstruction Loan”. This was the invitation addressed to the Italian population and appeared on pages of newspapers and wall posters after the end of the Second War World. The health reconstruction had to start from an extremely innovative product, arrived from North America with the American allied troops: penicillin. In Italy, where the existing penicillin came sporadically from France and England, it was soon clear the need to realize a constant and efficient production. We are in Milan, in 1947 and it was these circumstances that determined the foundation of SPA – Società Prodotti Antibiotici at the behest of physiologist Rodolfo Ferrari and of microbiologist Carlo Callerio. Penicillin was the priority and SUPERCILLIN of SPA, made in two formulations, was the first national penicillin for intramuscular use, supported by a fundamental – and original – advertising card. Soon comes the PRONTOCILLIN, penicillin with oral formulation for exclusive pediatric use.

Thanks to the scientific collaboration between the SPA and Sir Alexander Fleming, a new antibacterial substance called LISOZIMA was produced. Initially marketed ‘for the biological humanisation of cow’s milk‘ and as an artificial supplement in the feeding of infants, it is still on the market today as a medicinal specialty.

On 26 April, on the occasion of the inauguration of the new production departments and research and development laboratories in Via Biella in Milan, the then Cardinal Schuster imparted his blessing so that the company could help guide the Italian population out of post-war health and economic emergencies.

SPA enters the world of internal medicine and cardiology with drugs that are still appreciated and used today by general practitioners and specialists. The constant commitment to research and development at its laboratories has led to the production and marketing of drugs used in different therapeutic areas such as: gynecological, urological and osteoarticular.

BIOSPA, the diagnostics division of SPA, is born. The division begins with the marketing and sale of in vitro diagnostic reagents, developed and produced directly in the company’s biotechnology laboratories and with a market that, over time, has also spread abroad. Subsequently, through a careful research for foreign sources and a careful selection of products, BIOSPA acquires exclusive distributions of biotechnological products, aimed at the most promising sectors of scientific research. Today BIOSPA is a reliable manufacturer and supplier, specializing in: cell biology, molecular biology, immunology, instrumentation, histocompatibility and raw materials.

Since the 90s, SPA has consolidated its presence in cardiology with the launch, in 1991, of a medicinal speciality based on omega-3, an active ingredient of natural origin. In the clinical development of this product is to highlight the excellent collaboration of SPA with prestigious Research Centres. In these years SPA affirms its brand also in the osteoarticular sector with products that, still today, represent a reference point for this therapeutic area.

2004 marks the resumption of development activities in SPA antibiotic therapies with the marketing of a latest generation antibiotic.

SPA: for 60 years at the center of health. On the occasion of the 60th anniversary, SPA celebrates an important milestone in terms of continuity on the Italian pharmaceutical market, commitment to research and careful scientific preparation of its network of informants. In the following years, SPA continues to enrich its proposal in the field of osteoarticular and cardiovascular prevention.

2020 is the year of change: SPA is ready to tell the new chapter of a long, solid, all-Italian history and marked by new opportunities for growth.

The historic formula of Dissenten® is proposed with a new packaging designed in the name of high readability and high accessibility.

New graphic style, new colour code, new typeface
BIANCOENERO® was created for people with dyslexia and particularly suitable to make any information available in an optimal way, especially in the case of patients with vision disorders and reading difficulties.

In the same year SPA launches the first probiotic: Dissen Flora® , with S. boulardii (6 billion) and L. rhamnosus (6 billion), that favour the balance of intestinal flora, vitamin D that contributes to the normal function of the immune system and vitamins of the group B.

Dissenten® and Dissen Flora® are the protagonists of the series of television commercials “Intestini Felici e Contenti” planned on Rai channels from September 2021 and on corporate social channels.

As a further sign of renewal, the network of Pharmaceutical Representatives will be expanded in 2021 with the addition of 20 new figures.

The new course of the history of SPA also concerns environmental sustainability: from 17 November 2021 the company has activated a photovoltaic system able to produce about 67,000 Kw/h per year (of which it is expected to consume about 50,000 Kw/h and injection into the network of about 17,000 Kw/h).
The system saves annual CO2 emissions of about 36,000 kg

In 2022 the SPA celebrates the 75th anniversary of a history that has always been able to look back and point forward, aware of its solid roots from which it was born and determined to continue its journey thanks to the constant search for opportunities for growth.

Hence the launch of an important novelty: : GLICOSET®, nutraceutical to prevent diabetes and its complications thanks to the synergistic action of ilex paraguariensis, which helps control carbohydrate metabolism, Morus alba for the balance of lipid metabolism and Chromium picolinate that contributes to the maintenance of normal blood glucose levels.

In the year of the 75th anniversary SPA also inaugurates the new strategy of direct support to activities in pharmacy through a renewed representation organization.

For SPA, 2023 was a year of new achievements and great satisfaction as the company continued its pursuit of growth with passion and enthusiasm.

In January, SPA launched the new DIFOSFONAL® pack of 6 vials, designed to facilitate adherence to treatment, as part of a broader strategy for maximum coordination with medical recommendations on dosage frequency.

In February 2023, SPA secured an exclusive distribution agreement for Advicenne’s drug SIBNAYAL across Italy, Spain, and Portugal. This drug is used in treating distal renal tubular acidosis, a rare chronic condition that requires lifelong therapy.

The launch of new products continued in March with QRECTAL®, a medical device that treatshemorrhoidal disorders while avoiding the use of cortisone or local anaesthetics.

Also in March, SPA established its Spanish subsidiary, SPA Farma Ibérica, as part of its strategy to expand and seek new opportunities beyond national borders. This move aimed to export SPA’swinning business model, which centres on designing, developing, producing, and providing qualityhealthcare solutions.

The new company, SPA Farma Ibérica, intends to become a key player in the healthcare sector in Spain, with particular emphasis on nephrology and research and development of therapies for Rare Diseases.

In November 2023, SPA acquired Sophos Biotech, an Italian company that develops and markets therapies for breast cancer.

The acquisition saw seamless integration at the managerial level and strategically strengthened SPA’s Scientific Information network across the country. 

The history of SPA continues, without ever renouncing the essential values of competence, ethics and professionalism.