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Samsung Biologics emphasizes speed

Kevin Sharp (right), Samsung Biologics' vice president in charge of the strategic operation team and global sales center, speaks at the Convention on Pharmaceutical Ingredients Worldwide 2022 in Frankfurt, Germany, on Tuesday. (Samsung Biologics)
Kevin Sharp (right), Samsung Biologics' vice president in charge of the strategic operation team and global sales center, speaks at the Convention on Pharmaceutical Ingredients Worldwide 2022 in Frankfurt, Germany, on Tuesday. (Samsung Biologics)
FRANKFURT, Germany -- Samsung Biologics, a leading South Korean contract development and manufacturing organization, has highlighted its speed in expanding production capacity and bringing clients’ drug products to the market as the company’s competitive edge in the global CDMO industry.

“The most prominent differentiator is our speed to the market. We allow our customers to bring their products faster to the market,” said Kevin Sharp, Samsung Biologics’ vice president in charge of the strategic operations team and global sales center, in his presentation at the 2022 Convention on Pharmaceutical Ingredients Worldwide in Frankfurt, Germany, on Tuesday.

Sharp pointed out that Samsung Biologics was able to begin the operation of its fourth megaplant only 23 months after the groundbreaking ceremony. Last month, the Korean CDMO started the partial operation of its fourth plant with initial production capacity of 60,000 liters.

Plant 4 is expected to have a full production capacity of 240,000 liters per year when it is fully operational next year. According to the company, it will be the world's single-largest biopharmaceuticals manufacturing facility by production. Once the fourth plant is running at full strength, Samsung Biologics said it will have a combined production capacity of 604,000 liters, which would be enough to satisfy about 30 percent of the entire global demand.

Citing a survey conducted by market researcher BioPlan Associates, Samsung Biologics said 57 percent of all biopharmaceutical companies plan to increase the proportion of manufacturing outsourcing next year.

In regard to how Samsung Biologics has been able to differentiate itself from competitors in the market, Sharp listed five key factors to its success: the company’s continual cross-functional collaboration at all levels, transparent communication, speedy turnaround on requests, commitment from senior leadership and flexibility in contract discussions.

“What we can do better is to diversify our service offerings such as cell line development and mRNA. We are looking at new modalities and technologies including (antibody drug conjugates) and cell-and-gene therapy,” he said.

According to Samsung Biologics, the company has cut in half the industry’s average time it takes to complete the technology transfer, which is essential for producing biopharmaceuticals, to three months.

As biotechnology firms and drugmakers analyze CDMOs’ regulatory track records to increase the chances of a green light in different countries for their developing pipelines and drug products, Samsung Biologics said it had already obtained over 160 approvals from health agencies across the globe as of last month.

Having secured major contracts this year alone, the accumulative worth of Samsung Biologics’ CDMO deals has surpassed $8.8 billion so far.

By Kan Hyeong-woo (hwkan@heraldcorp.com), Korea Herald correspondent

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