Highly Potent API and Sterile Capabilities Key to DCAT Week ‘19 Company Announcements

At Pharma’s Almanac, we are excited to be reporting live from DCAT Week ‘19, organized by the Drug, Chemical & Associated Technologies Association (DCAT). The week kicked off on Monday morning with the Member Company Announcement Forum, featuring announcements of key investment, M&A and business development plans throughout the supply chain. The following is a quick summary of this year’s announcements at the forum.


Shawn P. Cavanaugh, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Cambrex Corporation, discussed how the company’s recent acquisitions are helping it become an industry leader in small molecule manufacturing. He highlighted the 2018 acquisition of Halo Pharma, which added finished dosage capabilities, and the 2019 acquisition of Avista Pharma, which has built up Cambrex’s offering in early-stage development and analytical capabilities.


Thermo Fisher Scientific was represented at the forum by Group Vice President, Strategy, Marshall Crew, who spoke about Thermo Fisher’s $150 million investment in its global steriles network, specifically at its facilities in Greenville, NC,as well as Monza and Ferentino, Italy. Marshall emphasized the company’s commitments to ensuring that each facility is aligned with regard to development and commercial capabilities, to achieving harmonization between North America and Europe to provide second sourcing, and to modernizing technology and scaling their business to meet demand.


Giorgio Salciarini, Technical Business Development Senior Manager at BSP Pharmaceuticals S.p.A., discussed investments in expanding capacity for oncology compounds and adding new capabilities for innovative molecules and immunotherapy. The company is adding 30,000 ft2 of manufacturing capacity for antibody–drug conjugation and a 150,000-ft2 new plant for innovative molecule and immunotherapy production.


SCHOTT AG Vice President, Marketing and Sales, Stefan-Marc Schmidt announced the company’s plans to invest $1 billion through 2025 in primary packaging capacity, with an eye on emerging markets, including new tanks for melting tubular glass in India and a new Greenfield facility in China, as well as new production sites for SCHOTT’s full glass portfolio.


Frederic Desdouits, Managing Director, CDMO, at SEQENS, described the company’s ongoing expansion of potent compound manufacturing, particularly a ~$30 million investment in a new Safebridge level 3 facility outside Paris, France. Frederic discussed this investment in more detail in his recent article in Pharma’s Almanac.


Catalent Pharma Solutions Vice President, Drug Substance & Biologics Analytical Services, Andrew Sandford discussed how the company is doubling down on biologics while also continuing to invest in expanding its oral delivery capabilities. Catalent is investing heavily to support its partners needs in biologics, including an investment of $214 million in biologics on top of the ~$950 million acquisition of Cook Pharmica. Additionally, Catalent is investing $59 million in new oral delivery technology and capabilities.


Dr. Lee Newton, Vice President and Business Unit Head, API Development & Manufacturing at Lonza Pharma & Biotech, announced Lonza’s 100 million CHF investment in small molecule manufacturing over the period 2017–2020, particularly driven by the demand for highly potent API manufacturing and achieving Industry 4.0 automation goals to increase compliance and data integrity while reducing costs.


Selkirk Pharma CEO Patrick Haffey discussed recent investments the young CMO has made in service of its goal to become the best-in-class aseptic manufacturing service provider to the pharma industry, specifically a $30 million purpose-built aseptic fill/finish Greenfield facility in Spokane, Washington. Selkirk expects to break ground on the new facility, which will allow concurrent processing of multiple products, in Q3 2019, with GMP manufacturing at the site available by Q4 2020.


Dr. Gwenaël Servant, Senior Director of Servier’s Contract Manufacturing business, described some elements of Servier’s €250 million in its network. Gwenaël discussed the company’s ongoing €7 million investment in its preparative chromatography offering, particularly in simulated moving bed, supercritical fluid chromatography and relocalization technology. Additionally, the company is investing €55 million over 3 years to construct a new biologics unit in Orléans, France that will focus on monoclonal antibody drug substance manufacturing and drug product fill/finish services for pre-filled syringes and vials. Servier plans to qualify the site in Q3 2020 and to bring it operational in 2021.


ACG Senior Vice President Kamlesh Oza announced the company’s plans to expand and create new capacity for capsule manufacturing on three continents. ACG is expanding its Zagreb, Croatia site, with plans to complete expansion by October 2020. The company is in the process of building new facilities in Dahunu, India and São Paulo, Brazil to serve the Asian and Latin American markets, respectively.


Dr. Gabriel Haering, CEO of Cerbios-Pharma SA, discussed the company’s planned investments in expanding its high potency API manufacturing capabilities. The company is currently investing $5.5 million in a new Safebridge category 3 & 4 production line, planned to become operational in Q4 2020, and is constructing a new dedicated category 4 conjugation suite for ADC manufacturing.



DCAT is a not-for-profit, member-supported, global business development association whose unique membership model integrates both innovator and generic drug manufacturers and suppliers of ingredients, development and manufacturing services, and related technologies. 


David Alvaro, Ph.D.

David is Scientific Editor in Chief of the Pharma’s Almanac content enterprise, responsible for directing and generating industry, scientific and research-based content, including client-owned strategic content, in addition to serving as Scientific Research Director for That's Nice. Before joining That’s Nice, David served as a scientific editor for the multidisciplinary scientific journal Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. He received a B.A. in Biology from New York University in 1999 and a Ph.D. in Genetics and Development from Columbia University in 2008.