The £3m ($4.6m) facility, at the UK contract manufacturing organisation’s (CMO) site in Queenborough, Kent, will produce, package and ship both liquid and solid dosage forms when fully operational in summer 2011.
A company spokeswoman told Outsourcing-pharma the plant will give Aesica “greater service provision” and confirmed that it will cater for customers worldwide.
This echoed comments by commercial director Adam Sims who said within drug industry “the use of more potent compounds has made high containment drug manufacturing a key focus for customers outsourcing their products.”
Aescia is one of a number of CMOs to have invested in high potency handling and manufacturing capacity in recent years. Notable examples include SAFC, Patheon and Catalent.
Schedule II boost
In addition to housing capacity for potent active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) and intermediates, the new plant will be one of only a handful in the UK capable of making Schedule II controlled drugs.
This capability further strengthens Aesica’s position in the sector, which received a significant boost after its facility in Cramlington, Northumberland was cleared to make Schedule II compounds last year
Aesica’s new investment fits with comments Sims during an interview with in-pharmatechnologist in February, when he explained that consolidating the firm’s position in Europe was a key business goal.
Prior to today’s announcement, Aesica had already begun strengthening its formulations business with the acquisition of fellow UK-based company R5 Pharmaceuticals.