Solvay reinforces outsourcing relationship with Lonza

By Anna Lewcock

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Solvay Pharmacology

Lonza Group and Solvay Pharmaceuticals have today announced a
strategic long-term manufacturing alliance.

Following an ongoing commercial partnership between the two companies, the renewed partnership will involve Lonza producing a selection of Solvay's large volume active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) in addition to the sub-products and other APIs it was previously responsible for.

The new alliance takes the form of an unlimited umbrella agreement, within which the companies can add limited sub-agreements for individual APIs.

A spokesperson for Lonza, while unable to provide specific figures, referred to the agreement as 'considerable.'

"This outsourcing is in line with Solvay Pharmaceuticals' strategy of shifting selected manufacturing activities to high quality, competitively-priced alternatives," said Solvay senior vice president of manufacturing and supply, Francesc Junyent.

Solvay's pharmaceutical business has come under pressure recently after it lost its patent protection on Pantoloc (pantropzole), one of its top products.

This contributed to a 4 per cent fall in revenues in 3Q, to €614m. However, Solvay also today announced that their New Drug Application for potential schizophrenia treatment bifeprunox has been officially filed by the US Food and Drug Administration.

Aside from the start of the formal process and review period, this event has also triggered a milestone payment of $25m (€18.8m) from Wyeth, Solvay's co-development and co-commercialisation partner for the drug in the US.

Following evaluation of the commercial potential of the compound, Solvay has estimated peak year sales in excess of $1bn (€0.75bn).

When asked whether the Lonza and Solvay's relationship had been at all threatened by cheaper outsourcing competition from Asia, a representative from Lonza said: "Being able to have this contract with Solvay shows we can offer good business.

We have a strong relationship with Solvay, and there is always the possibility that this could go deeper."

"We are in a globalised world, we have to adapt."

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