Millipore joins pilgrimage to Asia

By Gregory Roumeliotis

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Biotechnology Millipore

US filtration giant Millipore is pumping more resources into its
personnel and facilities in Asia, as outsourcing trends and new
laboratory investments in emerging markets such as China and India
are upping demand for its bioscience products and bioprocess

The Massachusetts-based company said it is increasing its production in India, though most of its manufacturing will be split between Cork, Molsheim and Jaffrey, and is expanding its sales and marketing presence in China.

In India, the company is sourcing some of its Bioprocess hardware systems, such as its K-Prime chromatography system, through its local joint venture company and is expanding its research and development operations in the region.

Specifically, it is building a new plant in Bangalore that will house both R&D and manufacturing activities, as more and more biopharmaceutical production takes place in India.

Millipore said its growth in the country is being driven by laboratory investments from pharmaceutical companies, the emergence of new biotechnology companies in a sector set to grow to $10bn by 2010, and increasing drug production to support India's growing population and worldwide demand.

Asked about the impact Millipore's investment in Asia will have on the products and services it provides, company spokesman Joshua Young told​ its customers will see the benefits in availability and price.

"The range of products we provide will not be affected, but maintaining a significant local presence will enable us to further penetrate the market with our products and take advantage of increasing demands due to economic growth and the growth of the biotechnology and pharmaceutical markets in those countries,"​ he said.

"Manufacturing in India will also help us to lower our manufacturing costs in producing many of these products."

The fastest growing segment of Millipore's operations in Asia however is China, where the company has had a presence for more than 20 years.

Millipore has doubled its number of sales representatives in the region and opened a larger office in Beijing to support the growth of products such as the company's Direct-Q ultrapure water system.

Direct-Q enables users to go from tap water to reagent grade water and is by far the company's most successful product in the country, since one-third of the new Direct-Q laboratory water systems sold in 2005 were purchased in China.

Increasing health concerns, new investments in the biopharmaceutical industry and rapid growth in the number of laboratories throughout the country are some of the key drivers the firm believes are contributing to its growth in China.

Millipore is the latest lab science company to focus its capital on expanding in Asia.

Last week, rival Pall announced it is boosting its infrastructure and services in the region, responding to increasing demand.

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