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Business & Regulation Business Practice, Contract Development Services, Contract Manufacturing Services, Small Molecules

Role Call

This article is part of our special focus on "traditional" pharma: The Small Molecule Manufacturer (read more here). You can find more articles from The Small Manufacturer here.

What does your role involve?

In short, my role is about supporting the Cambrex businesses with a marketing communications team that is smart, driven and effective, as well as working with the company Presidents, Executive management team and Board of Directors to provide market intelligence that is accurate, reliable and timely.

Two years ago, I relocated to the Cambrex head office in NJ, USA, to support with corporate development and mergers and acquisitions, and have since supported the recent acquisitions of Halo Pharma and Avista Pharma Solutions. Though all of these activities take the majority of my time, I think I am still a nerd at heart and spend the rest of my time researching the pharmaceutical market, analyzing data, authoring articles, and sitting (for probably more hours than are good for me) in front of a computer writing PowerPoint presentations.

Why did you join Cambrex – and what do you hope to achieve?

I was excited to have the opportunity to join Cambrex in 2014 because the company had a clear vision to become one of the largest and fastest growing companies in the small molecule space. My role was to help build a marketing and intelligence team that would be responsible for the rebranding and marketing of the company, and to help support the transition towards a data-driven culture for strategic decision making. Today, we are now considered a world-class CDMO through our hard work and dedication to small molecules and chemistry. Our organic growth strategy has culminated in many industry awards, including the Fortune award for the Top 100 fastest growing companies.

Our growth continues and we were excited to announce recently two acquisitions that allow us to access other parts of the outsourcing continuum in drug product and analytical services – Halo Pharma and Avista Pharma Solutions. These acquisitions provide Cambrex with the opportunity to access new markets.

Some say that the days of small molecules are over…

I would listen, smile and gently remind them that the world is still small… molecules! There is no denying the growth of competing modalities, such as monoclonal antibodies or gene therapies, and the continuing development of new technologies. Prior to Cambrex, I worked for Lonza and had the opportunity to work with many talented people across many molecule types, including monoclonal antibodies, recombinant proteins, cell and viral therapies. I was also lucky to be part of the team that worked on the world’s first biosimilar, so it is fair to say I have been on both sides of the fence. In the same vein, there is also no denying the fact that the overwhelming majority of patients are still treated by small molecule drugs – an industry that started in the mid-19th century and continues to flourish. Drug approval rates for small molecules have been trending upwards and are currently at a 20-year high, and we also see more molecules in the clinical pipeline than ever before. To put this into perspective, when I look back there are around 40 percent more small molecule NCEs in clinical trials than when I started my job at Cambrex five years ago. Given those numbers, I don’t know how much bigger you can get.

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