Pharmaceutical contract manufacturing is a highly competitive business currently growing by 12% a year. But there are only a few third-party manufacturers that can offer capacity supported by know-how, quality assurance and the ability to develop a client’s R&D and transform it into a market product.

Traditionally, many pharmaceutical companies have sold excess capacity to other industry players. However, this business has been ad hoc and, although it was once generally effective, it has proved increasingly unable to address the concerns of outsourcing manufacturers. These concerns focus on reliability in terms of both efficiency and product quality. The industry has come to accept that such qualities cannot be built on short-term relationships. Pharmaceutical manufacturer Nycomed is now establishing five-year deals with its clients that permit a high degree of flexibility coupled with extremely high service levels.

Based in Germany, Nycomed has 18 plants around the world and partners some 60 different international companies, ranging from big pharma firms and generic manufacturers to biotech businesses – typically start-ups that do not have the necessary strengths in manufacturing, product development, packaging and distribution that Nycomed can offer.

Best effort

As an innovative pharmaceutical manufacturer with established R&D and production expertise, Nycomed delivers operational and manufacturing excellence to its growing list of clients.

Potential clients rightly always ask where their business would stand in the event of exceptional production constraints. For example, does Nycomed have ‘A level’ and ‘B level’ clients for whom a ‘best effort’ commitment is different? The answer is an unequivocal ‘no’. Nycomed has moved on from selling whatever spare manufacturing capacity it has to building dedicated capacity designed to service long-term partnerships of five years or more.

Every Nycomed partner is guaranteed ‘best effort’ manufacturing because the company has put its best effort into creating reliable, flexible and efficient pharmaceutical production, backed by a highly efficient supply chain. In 2007, these services were recognised when Nycomed was awarded the Supply Chain Excellence from Abbott Laboratories of the US.

Nycomed’s commitment to excellence goes way beyond its manufacturing competence, whether in solids or liquids or niche production markets such as high potency drugs. It has its own proven R&D expertise and can work on late stage development to produce a fully marketable product, complete with innovative packaging and powerful distribution.

Nycomed’s manufacturing process is a result of the lean management philosophy. As part of the collaborative practice that is set in place for all clients, all processes are optimised, be they manufacturing, marketing or distribution, and savings achieved are shared with clients.

Dedicated business

Absolutely fundamental to its third-party contract relationships are reliable communications. Nycomed clients are linked directly to the operational managers at the manufacturing sites that have been dedicated to their business. Clients can always have a ‘coal face’ operational view of what is happening to their orders while their strategic objectives are addressed at Nycomed’s global headquarters at Orienburg, near Berlin, Germany.

With its wide portfolio of development, manufacturing, packaging and supply chain solutions, Nycomed is dedicated to providing its partners with a highly responsive and flexible world class service.

Company profile

Nycomed provides medicines for hospitals, specialists and general practitioners, as well as over-the-counter medicines in selected markets. The company is active within a range of therapeutic areas, including cardiology, gastroenterology, osteoporosis, respiratory, pain and tissue management. New products are sourced from own research and from external partners. Nycomed has a presence in 50 markets worldwide. Privately owned, the combined group had annual sales of approximately €3.4 billion and an EBITDA of €933.4 million (2006 results).