Harlan Laboratories has followed 2011 cutbacks and consolidation measures with plans to invest and expand its preclinical services site in Itingen, Switzerland.
The preclinical contract research organisation (CRO) announced that it will invest $4.5m (€3.5m) this week, explaining that it will expand the site’s inhalation lab, upgrade its suites for chronic and subchronic studies and set up a floor dedicated to reproductive and rodent toxicology.
Harlan – which also plans to set up areas for clinical diagnostics, biochemical analysis and foetal pathology through the investment - said the move had been made possible by cost cuts that it implemented last year to offset weak demand for preclinical services.
The cost reduction measures included the transfer of operations from Harlan’s site in Fullinsdorf – also in Switzerland - to the Itingen laboratory and a 100-strong headcount reduction that reduced the CRO’s wage bill by 8 per cent according to local news website L’Alsace.fr .
CEO Hans Thunem made reference to the custs while announcing the new investment, explaining that: “We indicated last year that our commitment to our operations in Switzerland was strong but being tested by lack of profitability.
“With the results delivered by our employees over the last 12 months, it is rewarding to now be able to make new investments in our Swiss operations.”
Harlan also announced that in response to customer demand it wants to expand its capabilities in histology with new processing equipment and staff and said that it expects to make a related announcement at the end of January 2013.
“In addition, based on input from clients globally, Harlan is increasing the already considerable level and breadth of its histopathology support. As well as its own in-house pathologists and the on-going relationship with Anapath, Harlan CRS is expanding the membership of its Pathologist Panel to include world-renowned experts from the UK and France.