At the end of last year the Canadian CMO put in place a recovery strategy for its Puerto Rican operations after years of underperformance, indicating that it would sell one of its facilities there (in Carolina) whilst driving improvements at two others (Manati and Caguas) to make them profitable this year. And the latest move is firmly in line with Patheon's stated strategy of focusing on high value, specialised services, described at length by Steven Liberty, senior vice president of operations, Patheon North America, at Interphex earlier this year. Aside from high-potency compounds, the firm is also trying to boost its ability to win contracts in development services, specialised technologies and the manufacture of sterile and lyophilised compounds. Patheon will invest a total of $2.8m in a new 3,386 sq. ft. area at Manati that will include three manufacturing suites, air lock containment areas, and humidity controlled air systems. Manati's capabilities will complement Patheon's existing high-potency facilities such as Swindon, UK, and Bourgoin, France. Patheon said the new production suites would allow it to "combine in one manufacturing area technology transfer, bulk production, bulk packaging, and storage." It will have containment capabilities down to 1 microgram per sq. m. and be able to manufacture humidity-controlled solid dosage form products. The construction project is being fast-tracked, and should be completed by the end of September. And encouragingly for Patheon, the company has already won one contract to make use of the high-potency suites. "The Manati expansion is part of our strategy to satisfy the special manufacturing needs of our current and future customers," said Terry Novak, president of Patheon North America. "Other Patheon sites have extensive capabilities to manufacture products of this type. The addition of this capability in Puerto Rico provides another high quality manufacturing site option to our customers." Patheon is also on the look out for opportunities to add sterile manufacturing capabilities in the US, and wants to expand into emerging markets such as Latin America, India, China, Eastern Europe, as well as the lucrative Japanese pharmaceutical market, still ranked as the second-largest pharmaceutical market in the world. To that end Patheon recently opened a new subsidiary in Japan earlier this month. Outsourcing-Pharma.com will publish an interview with Andrew Davis, senior business development manager for the Asia-Pacific region next week, looking at the role of the new Japanese subsidiary and the emerging Japanese market for contract manufacturing services.