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Upturn Seen For Fine Chemicals

CPhI: Suppliers hope the pharmaceutical chemicals business will continue to improve

by Ann M. Thayer
October 15, 2012 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 90, Issue 42

Credit: James Cumpsty/UBM
CPhI attendees enjoyed the business climate in Madrid last week.
Crowd shot at CPhI Worldwide in Madrid in October 2012.
Credit: James Cumpsty/UBM
CPhI attendees enjoyed the business climate in Madrid last week.

A generally good industry outlook prevailed among attendees at last week’s CPhI Worldwide, the annual pharmaceutical ingredients conference, held this year in Madrid. The upbeat view came even as the International Monetary Fund lowered its estimates for global economic growth and European finance ministers rolled out a $650 billion bailout program for troubled eurozone economies.

Some people at the conference did express a bit of anxiety about prospects for economic recovery in Europe. However, 85% of exhibitors say they are positive about the future, seeing pharma industry dynamics outweigh concerns about the global economy, according to a survey by show organizer UBM.

Custom manufacturers are spreading their bets around the globe. “Operate globally, but be present locally” is Albany Molecular Research Inc.’s philosophy, said Ian Shott, the U.S. firm’s European president. The company expects to see a “solid uptick” in business after integrating its operations across three continents as part of a restructuring.

BASF announced construction of a catalyst production line in Mangalore, India. Due to open in 2013, the line will be the German company’s first for fine chemicals catalysts in Asia. BASF also recently decided to move the headquarters of its pharma ingredients business from Switzerland to the U.S.

India’s Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories announced that it is expanding output of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) at its Mirfield, England, facility. Also in the U.K., Almac expects to have completed by year’s end an API expansion in Craigavon, Northern Ireland. Separately, the company has joined with DSM to offer customers development of biocatalytic production routes.

Meanwhile, France’s Novasep said it will invest $39 million to build a commercial-scale chromatography plant in Mourenx, France. The company said the expansion is in response to projected demand for a large-volume, highly purified API. Earlier this year, Novasep opened a new facility in China.



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