Pharma/Fine Chemicals Roundup – November 29
6:30 AM MST | November 29, 2011 | By DEEPTI RAMESH
JOHNSON MATTHEY REPORTS RISE IN PROFITS
By Natasha Alperowicz
Johnson Matthey, in the first half ended September 30, 2011, reported a 23% increase in underlying operating profit to £214.7 million ($335.7 million) on 29% higher sales, including precious metals, at £5.98 billion. Sales excluding precious metals were 17% up at £1.3 billion with “good growth across all of the group’s divisions.”
Johnson Matthey fine chemicals division reported a 13% rise in underlying operating profit to £32.5 million on 15% higher revenue of £146 million. The division’s active pharmaceuticals ingredients manufacturing business, which comprises Macfarlan Smith and Pharmaceutical Materials and Services, reported a 17% increase in sales to £102 million, partly as a result of legacy business associated with the Conshohocken plant in the U.S. acquired last November.
ROCHE OPENS R&D UNIT TO DEVELOP FORMULATIONS FOR NEW APIS
Roche (Basel, Switzerland) says it has opened a new R&D center for innovative formulation processes and technologies at Basel, which involved an investment of SF250 million ($271 million). The facility will investigate and develop pharmaceutical formulations for new active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), as well as manufacture supplies for global clinical trials.
“Finding the safest and most efficient formulation for an active ingredient is a key part of the drug development process,” says Severin Schwan, CEO of Roche. “Functions from the entire pharmaceutical value-chain are located in Basel. This investment further strengthens the role of Basel headquarters and as a global centre for research and development.”
U.S. PHARMACOPEIAL CONVENTION FORMS EAST ASIA EXPERT COMMITTEE FOR QUALITY STANDARDS FOR EXCIPIENTS
The United States Pharmacopeial Convention (USP; Rockville, MD) says its board of trustees recently approved the formation of new expert committees for the previously announced USP Medicines Compendium (MC). The newest expert committee is being formed in East Asia and will be composed of scientists from the Chinese community and their initial focus will be on quality standards for excipients, USP says. The MC is a free, online source of public standards that help ensure the quality of chemical and biological medicines. Additional expert committees also may be formed in other regions for the development of standards for articles approved by regulatory authorities in those regions, USP says. The first of USP’s expert committees focused on the MC was established in India, a major exporter or medicines to the world.
The USP says it has also published the first ten standards for the MC. USP is a scientific non-profit organization that sets standards for the quality, purity, identity, and strength of medicines, food ingredients, and dietary supplements manufactured and sold worldwide.
BOEHRINGER INGELHEIM BUILDS API FACILITY IN U.S.
Boehringer Ingelheim (Ingelheim, Germany) says its Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals (Ridgefield, CT) subsidiary is building a $65-million facility that will produce active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) used in early development activities. Products developed here, if approved, will move on to Boehringer Ingelheim’s full-scale R&D facilities in Ohio and Virginia in the U.S., as well as in Germany and Italy.
DOTTIKON CONTINUES TO MAKE A LOSS, SEES AN UPTICK IN THE MARKET
By Alex Scott
Dottikon (Dottikon, Switzerland), a fine chemicals producer specializing in hazardous chemical reactions, has reported a net loss of SF 2.7 million ($2.9 million) for the six months to September 30, compared with a net loss of SF2.3 million for the same period one year ago. Corresponding sales were down 14% to SF30.8 million for the first half of the year, compared with the year-ago period. Although the company recorded another net loss it has now moved beyond the prospective “bottom” of its financial performance, says Markus Blocher, the company’s CEO.