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Roche signs biologics partnership with Samsung

Manufacturing deal follows investment in pharma firm's own capabilities

Samsung biologics manufacturing plant South Korea
Samsung BioLogic manufacturing plant

Swiss pharma company Roche has signed a biologics manufacturing deal with Samsung BioLogics.

The long-term agreement will see Samsung produce Roche biologics at its two facilities in Incheon, South Korea, one of which is still under construction.

The deal comes one week after Roche outlined its plans to make a substantial investment in its own biologics capability, expanding sites in the US, Germany and Switzerland.

Roche's biologics portfolio includes the cancer drugs Kadcyla (trastuzumab emtansine) and Perjeta (pertuzumab), which launched this year and brought in 191m Swiss francs (about $214m) in the first half of this year.

In addition, the company has 39 investigational biologic medicines in its pipeline, the most advanced of which is chronic lymphocytic leukaemia candidate obintuzumab.

Samsung confirmed that new deal would see it work on proprietary Roche biologics, but further terms of the agreement, including financial terms and products to be manufactured, were not disclosed.

Tae-Han Kim, president and CEO of Samsung BioLogics, said: "We are pleased to announce this strategic manufacturing relationship with Roche and look forward to delivering best-in-class manufacturing services with the highest global quality standards.

"This collaboration with the world's largest biotech company is an important milestone for Samsung as it validates our long term strategy of becoming a leader in biopharmaceutical manufacturing."

The deal provides a further boost to Samsung's biologics contract manufacturing business, and follows deals earlier this year with Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) and Merck & Co.

Under Samsung's agreement with BMS the South Korean firm has a long-term agreement to manufacture one of the pharma company's antibody cancer drugs at its Songdo Incheon facility.

Meanwhile, Merck has teamed up with Samsung's joint venture with Biogen Idec in a deal that will see the three partners collaborate on the development and commercialisation of biosimilars.

Article by
Dominic Tyer

24th October 2013

From: Sales

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