World Courier opens trial depots in Africa & Australia

By Nick Taylor

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags World courier South america Contract research organization

World Courier has opened investigational drug storage facilities in South Africa and Australia, a move it says is in response to growth in the regions' clinical trials markets.

The rapid globalisation of the clinical trials market has created a need for infrastructure around the world and World Courier has responded, opening 11 drug storage depots.

World Courier's operations now includes sites in Johannesburg, South Africa and Melbourne, Australia. Asia, Latin America and Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) frequently dominate discussions about clinical trial globalisation but World Courier believes there are growth opportunities outside these regions.

Wayne Heyland, President and CEO of World Courier, claims that Africa and Australia "undertake over 15 per cent of current global clinical trials conducted outside North America, representing an annual estimated market of almost US $3bn (€2bn)​".

Africa in particular represents a massive, treatment naive patient pool and contract research organisations (CRO) have begun to make moves into the continent.

South Africa is fairly well established as a clinical trial destination but other countries are beginning to open up, with Quintiles viewing the continent as the next non-traditional region to develop medicines and setting up in Ghana.

Construction and expansion

The new sites are staffed by full-time licensed pharmacists and can store clinical trial materials at temperatures from -70°C to 25°C.
World Courier provides round the clock access to inventories, transport of all investigational drugs from country of origin to the depot and immediate delivery to clinical trial sites.

In addition to the new depots World Courier has also expanded its sites in other countries in response to " a surge in demand​".
The company's facilities in Beijing, China, Bengaluru, India, Buenos Aires, (Argentina, Lima, Perú, México City, México, Santiago, Chile and São Paulo, Brazil.

Expansion of the existing depots and construction of two new sites has "more than tripled World Courier`s clinical trial storage capacity​", according to Heyland.

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