Chinese CRO WuXi Pharmatech Acquires Apptec Laboratory Services

wuxi.pngWuXi (pronounced Woo-See) Pharmatech, a contract research organization (CRO) based in China, announced the acquisition of MN-based Apptec Laboratory Services. WuXi acquired Apptec to gain an immediate US footprint, better access to the US market, and important biologics expertise to expand outside the world of small molecules. This biologics expertise includes Apptec’s cell therapy bioproduction business which they were aggressively moving in to.

These two fast growing companies may be a match made in heaven in the rapidly evolving world of globalization. Apptec has a blazing compounded annual revenue growth rate of 46%, and WuXi acquired them for $151 million US. While Apptec has been around for over 20 years, WuXi was founded in December of 2000, and is the leading China-based pharmaceutical and biotechnology R&D outsourcing company that already has a market capitalization of over $1.8 billion US. WuXi boasts that their management teamconsists of Western-trained Ph.D.s and MBAs with experience in drug R&D methodologies and Western-style business practices.” They are successful enough to have 9 of the top 10 drug companies (by revenue) as clients. Interestingly, WuXi has straightforwardly addressed the intellectual property concerns that typically comes with working with Chinese companies by establishing strict documentation and security procedures that are “rigorously enforced to protect partners’ confidential and proprietary information.” It is very likely that all of these attributes, from management to a commitment to quality to addressing IP concerns, have contributed to their rapid growth and success in only 7 years as an operating company. In order to maintain such rapid growth, many companies are looking to the emerging cell therapy market. I wonder how much of Apptec’s exposure to cell therapy drove this acquisition.

I am very interested to see if WuXi follows through on Apptec’s initial plans for aggressively pursuing the emerging cell therapy markets as seriously as Lonza has done with their Cambrex acquisition last year. If so, the expertise obtained via the Apptec purchase will bring important skills and know-how into China, and this can have lasting impacts on the global regenerative medicine landscape.


About jrowley

This blog is about the technology behind Regenerative Medicine - including, but not limited to, stem cells therapies, biomaterial-based devices, as well as tissue engineered products. My name is Jon Rowley. I have been in the Regenerative Medicine field since 1994 (undergraduate research), and have my PhD in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Michigan in Biomedical Engineering. I am currently an employee of Aastrom Biosciences, an adult autologous cell therapy company. You can see my professional creds at: Important Note: Absolutely everything posted in this blog is my personal opinion and is in no way the opinion of my employer, Aastrom Biosciences, or approved by anyone before it is posted. No warranties or other guarantees will be offered as to the quality of the opinions or anything else offered here.
This entry was posted in Apptec, BD, Bioprocessing, business models, Company Profiles, Invitrogen, JNJ, Lonza, Manufacturing, Regenerative Medicine, WuXi Pharmatech. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Chinese CRO WuXi Pharmatech Acquires Apptec Laboratory Services

  1. Pingback: Consolidation Trends Within the Blossoming RegenMed Service Sector « The Regeneration Station

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