MakroCare teams with LSK Global for further Asian expansion

By Gareth Macdonald

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Pharmacology, South korea

US-headquartered trial services firm MakroCare has continued its expansion in Asia with a new partnership with South Korea-based CRO LSK Global.

The deal, financial terms of which have not been disclosed, will see the firms provide client and promotional support for drug development, trial management and commercialisation services in their respective territories.

The agreement is a similar to the expansion-though-partnership approach taken in Korea by companies like Siro Clinpharm​, Ricerca​ and inVentiv​ in recent years.

MakroCare president Mahesh Malneedi told Outsourcing-pharma.com that a key motivation for the collaboration was supporting his firm’s activities in Asia, particularly in the world’s second biggest pharmaceutical market Japan where it has operated for the past two years.

For Asian trials that need to be submitted to Japan, where PMDA accepts data mostly from Japan, Korea, Taiwan and China, we need other countries data to support our Japanese operations.

Korean demand

Beyond Japan Malneedi said teaming with LSK gives access to Korea and Taiwan which he called “very good markets for high-end products in pharma, biotech and devices where we are seeing more interest in doing trials by multi-nationals as part of product extension strategy​.”

This idea, for Korea at least, is supported by recent data from the US clinicaltrials.gov website, which shows that the number of trials begun in the country in recent years has increased dramatically​ due to growing demand from international pharmaceutical developers.

The potential of the Korean trials sector was also further underlined by a recent ​move by the world's largest CRO, Quintiles, which entered into partnership with the Korea National Enterprise for Clinical Trials (KoNECT) to develop the country's study infrastructure.

BRIC access

Malneedi also predicted that the LSK partnership would attract business from Korean drug and medical device developers looking “to take their products to BRIC countries we can help them realise their goals by working along with a local Korean partner​.”

He also spoke about MakroCare’s other Asian expansion plans, announcing that the firm, which already has units in Singapore, Malaysia and India, will be launching operations in Shanghai, China in September.

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