NEWS FROM CPHI: Piramal expects growth in ADCs and expansion into areas other than oncology

Will also focus on low-volume, high-value API generics over next five years

Piramal is forecasting growth across all areas of its business over the next five years.

The Indian company's Formulation Services business, for example, expects to commercialise around 34 antibody drug conjugates (ADCs) over the next 3-5 years.

Growth of 45% is expected in its hormonal products business and a large project for around 600 million hormonal tablets is currently being executed.

Speaking at CPhI this week, Chief Executive Vivek Sharma said Piramal also aims to triple the growth of its API Generics business over the next five years by focusing on low-volume, high-value complex APIs.

Vivek Sharma

'We have a robust pipeline of 24 products under development which will be launched over the next 34 years,' he said. 'We also plan to file 8 DMFs per year from 2015.'

The company is investing significantly in infrastructure to cope with this expected growth and has already announced an investment of US$10m to build a new plant in Ahmedabad that will provide an additional 11 labs for synthetic chemistry; a one kilo lab is expected to open next month (November) producing cytotoxics, hormonals and targeted oncology therapeutics.

In the UK, Piramal is tripling production capacity for hormonal products, including contraceptive pills and hormone replacement therapies, at Morpeth in a $15m investment, while at Grangemouth it is spending $5m on upgrading its ADC manufacturing suites to handle 1.5kg batches.

While the ADC market is a relatively small one for Piramal, currently representing 5% of total revenues, and mainly in the oncology area, it is expected to increase to 810% over the next two years. Bill Wedlake, Piramal's President of Formulations, said the company would offer conjugation in other areas, such as antibiotics, in the near future.

The company is also spending a further $42m on upgrading equipment and technology at its plants in Digwal and Ennore in India.

Shah said the company was also in active discussions for the acquisition of a sterile business and API manufacturing facilities.

Green chemistry is another area of focus.

This activity is against a background of growth in the contract manufacturing market, which is expected to increase from $54bn in 2014 to $76bn by 2018. Although the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) in this market is 9% on average, in India it is 1213%.

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