Many companies from emerging markets expressed an interest in the original EZ Blister but converting these enquiries into sales proved challenging, Aubrey Sayers, CEO of Sepha, told in-PharmaTechnologist.
Price was identified as a possible cause of the low conversion rate, prompting Sepha to perform a cost reduction exercise on the EZ Blister. The mechanism from the original machine has been retained but is now housed in a smaller, more affordable package.
Sayers added that the tabletop version of EZ Blister II is around 25 to 30 per cent cheaper than the original model. With stainless steel housing the EZ Blister II costs 10 per cent less than the original version.
While making these changes Sepha has retained the core components. For instance, EZ Blister II is capable of batch coding blister packs to allow for traceability of drugs in clinical trials.
Sepha has also included nitrogen purge to extend the shelf-life of the drug, Teflon plates to allow for easy removal of the pack, and pressure boosters to improve the sealing process.
The product has just launched worldwide and Sayers said there has already been interest, although no sales have been made. Pricing has proven to be particularly attractive, added Sayer, and it is hoped this will boost business from both emerging markets and established regions.
Sepha believes bringing trial blister packaging in-house can save time and help to reach market sooner. Furthermore, Sepha can design new packs and the EZ Blister II can be quickly tooled-up for new products. Thermoform and cold-form tooling takes 2 to 3 weeks.
EZ Blister II is more economical for batches up to 20,000 units, making it suitable for low volume specialist products and clinical trials. Changeover takes two minutes, reducing down-time, and it is current good manufacturing practice (cGMP) compliant. Cleaning takes 5 minutes.