Updated on 19 April 2013
Western biopharma firms – Trying to catch the Chinese dragon by its tail
Biopharma firms, which are located on the western part of the globe, are keeping a close watch on the dragon nation, with hopes that they can leverage on the potential that China has to offer in 2013.
This is evident from the fact that within a span of 60 days, (during November and December 2012) biopharmaceutical companies belonging to the domains of manufacturing, drug discovery and clinical services, have shown pertinent interest in expanding their presence in China.
In November 2012, US-based Thermo Fisher Scientific opened its new manufacturing facility in Suzhou for sciences consumables and equipment. While expanding its manufacturing footprint, the company is also strengthening its local production capabilities to meet increased customer demand in China and other Asia Pacific markets. The company has invested nearly $20 million in a 12,000 square meter Suzhou plant, which would employ around 150 employees.
"China is one of our fastest-growing markets and has been a key contributor to our success," mentioned Mr Marc N Casper, president and CEO, Thermo Fisher Scientific, while announcing the plan. "The Suzhou facility builds on our well-established presence in China and is an important next step as we closely align our depth of capabilities with China's five-year-plan to develop strategic industries, including pharmaceutical and healthcare among others."
Furthermore, PerkinElmer acquired Shanghai Haoyuan Biotech, a China-based infectious disease diagnostics company at $38 million, during November 2012. The acquisition extends PerkinElmer's capabilities into nucleic acid blood screening and in the growing molecular clinical diagnostics market in China.
It is also reported that US-based ConjuChem, which is engaged in discovery of novel therapeutics, formed a joint venture (JV) with China's Changshan Pharma, valued at $3 million. Similarly, US-based Promega opened its new facility in Shanghai for its China operations that provides additional R&D and cGMP manufacturing capabilities for molecular diagnostics products for the Chinese market.