Booming Biomanufacturing Opportunities in Asia

Life sciences industry is all about innovation so the outsourcing companies need to mould their strategies and business models according to the changing environment. Pharmaceutical companies are diversifying in areas of therapies, diagnostics, biomarkers and the hottest one is biologic drugs. This opens new opportunities for contract manufacturers to prove their expertise in biologics manufacturing as well. Impressively, infrastructure and progressing knowledge bank is pulling the big pharmaceutical companies to outsource their biologics manufacturing need to Asian countries such as China and Singapore. China has already shown its interest and capability in attracting the Western market for biologics manufacturing. Last year, Chinese government decided to build a contract biologics production facility in Beijing with an investment of $100 million. Also, China-based AutekBio announced building of Asia's largest biologics contract manufacturing organization in China. To construct the facility, AutekBio signed a deal securing $100 million in venture capital from private and government sources.

Singapore is another country that is putting in efforts to emerge as a biomedical hub. Government is supporting various plans and providing fund assistance to support the infrastructure and talent pool. Singapore-based companies are also creating a strong position in outsourcing biologics contract manufacturing services. A-Bio Pharma leverages its wide range of manufacturing solutions for mammalian cell culture systems, including process development, optimization, manufacturing scale-up tagged with GMP production, quality control and regulatory compliance.

India has exhibited its expertise in generics drugs and with the expiry of biologic drugs the country is gearing up to take a lead role in biosimilar manufacturing. Global contract manufacturers have shown their inclination towards India and are building their manufacturing capacities here. Recently, Lonza announced its plans to invest in two major projects in the Genome Valley, Hyderabad. Lonza is not only expanding its manufacturing potential but also enhancing its biologics R&D capabilities.

"There is a growing opportunity in biologics manufacturing. Currently, most biomanufacturing capabilities rest with innovator companies and a few CMOs. Developing resources in this area will be the key for CMOs for the success in the future," says Mr Jasti of Suven Life Sciences.

In order to win promising deals for biologics manufacturing, India and China need to keep a close watch at the developments in global pharma market as global drug companies are implementing plans and actions to strengthen their market in biologic drugs.

For instance, Bristol Myers Squibb has extended the manufacturing agreement with Lonza till 2013. Further, it has entered into a manufacturing contract with South Korea-based Celltrion and has constructed its own $750 million biologics manufacturing plant. Novartis, another global drug company, focused on biologics drug has extended its development and manufacturing relationship with Lonza and is building $700 million biological manufacturing facility in Singapore. Lonza has a strong position in Singapore as well and is in the process of making a large-scale biologicals manufacturing facility which would be the most advanced mammalian operation in South-East Asia. With its cell therapy expansion in Singapore, Lonza will able to serve cell therapy clients by 2012.

With Asia’s biomanufacturing sector booming with opportunities, Biopharma Asia Convention 2013 will be held from 18-21 March 2013, at Resorts World Sentosa. Biologic Manufacturing World Asia 2013 brings together important stakeholders in the biologic manufacturing space. International and regional biopharmaceutical manufacturers, biotechs, contract manufacturers and technology providers gather to discuss the latest technology and best practices in increasing biologic manufacturing productivity.

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