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World Courier key to emerging market growth, ABC CFO says

By Nick Taylor , 12-Jun-2012

AmerisourceBergen will use recently acquired World Courier to expand its existing businesses into new markets, its CFO said.

Having closed the $520m (€416m) takeover last month AmerisourceBergen is beginning to figure out how to get the most out of World Courier. Initial plans centre on using the global footprint of World Courier to expand AmerisourceBergen business units into emerging markets.

At Goldman Sachs Annual Global Healthcare Conference, Tim Guttman, acting chief financial officer at AmerisourceBergen, said: “We think there are significant opportunities to use that business as a platform to expand our specialty business and our consulting businesses into international markets.”

The 150 offices run by World Courier give it people in all the fast growth emerging markets and the plan is for AmerisourceBergen to leverage these assets to grow its own businesses outside the US. “They have a lot of feet on the ground and healthcare is very local decision making”, Guttman said.

Guttman gave the example of expanding the AmerisourceBergen-owned business ICS, which offers third-party logistics,overseas to keep a World Courier client once a therapeutic is commercialised.

We have the people, we have the depot, we have the location…we have the experience in 3PL, so that’s the kind of business we can take and transport and do in certain select international markets”, Guttman said.

To spot these opportunities AmerisourceBergen wants to work closely with the World Courier team and held its first big meeting of senior management at both companies last week. It is still only five weeks since the deal closed but Guttman is optimistic the acquisition can create new opportunities.

Packaging combination

AmerisourceBergen also thinks the global footprint at World Courier can create new business for its consulting unit. The business includes that contract packaging operations that AmerisourceBergen rejigged last week.

US-based Anderson Packaging and UK-based Brecon Pharmaceuticals, both of which are part of AmerisourceBergen, will now operate under the same name, AndersonBrecon. The company has 12 facilities that AmerisourceBergen thinks will help it deal with globalisation of the drug industry.

Peyton Howell, president of AmerisourceBergen Consulting Services, said: “Moving to a more global organisation will better position us to offer our customers a more integrated approach for the global launch of pharmaceutical products, helping to accelerate speed-to-market and product success.”

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