Recipharm moves for Cobra to boost biologics capacity

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

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Swedish CDMO Recipharm will buy privately-owned group Cobra Biomanufacturing to build its presence in the expanding biologics sector.

UK-based Cobra, which has manufacturing facilities in Oxford and Keele, produces proteins, virus, DNA and cells on a contractual basis for the development of drugs and vaccines.

A Recipharma spokesman told Outsourcing-pharma that: “Cobra brings to us a very interesting customer platform [and] they have a very reputable name within the biologics sector and very skilled and experienced staff.

He highlighted Cobra’s patented Ort/Ort-Vac platform, which is used for antibiotic-free maintenance therapy and high dosage oral vaccine delivery, and it Xer-cise chromosomal modification technology as key motivations for the planned deal.

He also said that: “In the short term perspective we are looking for recruiting 4-6 people in the Keele facility. In the long term perspective the further growth of the company will lead to much more recruitment while growing the business.

Cobra CEO Simon Saxby said the acquisition “is a welcome and essential step in order for Cobra to be able to provide long term stability and [the] increased scale needed for our clients.

Saxby went on to say that the combined organisation will be able to compete more effectively in the global biomanufacturing market.

Biologics capacity

Recipharm’s effort to expand biologics capacity fits with a general trend among Western contractors to focus on sectors with higher barriers to entry than traditional drug production, which can be done more cheaply elsewhere.

This, according to the firm’s spokesman, does not mean there is not competition in the contract the industry.

We believe this pharmaceutical sector will be more important in the future, both for being part of delivering better healthcare for patients and also because it will continue to grow.”

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