Contract manufacturing boom benefits Penn Pharmaceuticals

By Wai Lang Chu

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Clinical trial, Clinical research

Penn Pharmaceutical Services has reported strong sales figures for
the fifth consecutive year, with a key driver of recent growth
being attributed to a boom in contract manufacturing as well as
small-scale commercial batches.

The contract development and manufacturing organisation have been reaping the rewards of a recent trend that has seen drug companies look to alternate outsourcing means to achieve greater efficiency and productivity.

In this highly competitive industry, it is vital that companies ensure the quick commercialisation of new drugs by accelerating the time to market for their products.

Penn's recorded a 53 per cent increase compared to 2004, with overall sales for its key outsourced services at £8.57 million (€12.6 million) to March 2005, an increase of 30 per cent on the previous year.

The company attributed the projects European and US clients supplementing these strong performances in clinical trials supply and QP consultancy since the implementation of the EU Clinical Trials Directive in May last year.

The EU Directive on Clinical Trials (Directive 2001/20/EC) was published on 4 April 2001 for implementation into national legislation by 1 May 2004.

The Directive aims to harmonise standards for the conduct of clinical research across the European Union and establish compliance with Good Clinical Practice as a legal requirement.

"Growth has remained strong since our second MBO in December last year and the resurgence of the contract manufacturing division has been a major factor," commented Penn's CEO Craig.

"The QP consultancy side of the business has proved another success story with comprehensive audits carried out for clients in the US, Canada and Japan in recent months."

Rennie added that the company continued to invest in facilities with new equipment brought in to support formulation and analytical development activity and stability testing capacity has now doubled in size.

Manufacturing capability has recently been expanded to allow a greater range of batch size production.

"This investment, along with the implementation of strategic staff training and development plans, has enabled us to stay at the forefront of contract development and manufacturing,"​ he added.

Advances in processes and technologies and mounting cost pressures are forcing drug companies to look at alternate means.

CMOs are revamping their business model and providing more value- added services such as development, logistics, packaging, and marketing.

By opting for such services, pharmaceutical companies are able to reduce the number of supply chain participants and make optimum use of their internal resources.

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