Within the biopharma industry, consistency is key – not just from your product but from your supplier. We spoke with two experts from Thermo Fisher Scientific about how they meet their customers’ challenges together with Novo Nordisk Pharmatech.
Thermo Fisher Scientific is one of the largest suppliers to the biopharma industry, supporting both commercial bioproduction and biosciences. The company serves a broad range of customers. In bioproduction alone, Thermo Fisher Scientific works with every application of cell culture, from vaccines, to cell and gene therapy and even with artificial meats. The one thing all its customers have in common? The need for quality.
A reputation for quality that opens doors
Quality is critical for cell or gene therapy, explains Abhijeet Kohli, a product manager responsible for Thermo Fisher Scientific’s cell culture and media portfolio. Meanwhile, biosimilar manufacturers need to ensure that their quality fits that of originators as closely as possible. In the vaccine space, a higher quality product delivers higher value by providing a good dollar per gram value.
“Insulin is a very important raw material,” says Abhijeet Kohli. “In general, the Novo Nordisk brand carries with it a higher value. Typically, for a cell or gene therapy application where quality is paramount, our customers prefer a Novo Nordisk type insulin for their products versus a different brand.”
Quality is also a key consideration for Sourcing Manager Vince Saint. Tightening regulations have increased the validation new customers need to do. This makes customer onboarding a long and challenging process for Thermo Fisher Scientific. But Novo Nordisk Pharmatech is able to help here too. “Customers are very aware of who the key players are in the market,” says Vince Saint.
“The reputation of Novo Nordisk Pharmatech precedes itself, as a top tier manufacturer with a great quality record historically. This is very helpful when working with new customers, and something we can lead with.”
A partnership built to meet future challenges
“Novo Nordisk Pharmatech is a top performer across our supplier measurements. But it’s different from just supply and order – this is a partnership,” Vince Saint explains.
“We have a good line of communication back and forth through our contact, Timur Özbay. This really lends itself to having a complete and functioning operation, with high quality, great delivery performance, and really good communication between our companies.” According to Vince Saint, this partnership was instrumental during the coronavirus pandemic:
“COVID-19 hasn’t affected this part of the business, since we had agreed-on safety stock that helped us through the initial stages of the pandemic. Where we didn’t have the same relationship, we had supply interruptions.” The same holds true as Thermo Fisher Scientific looks to the challenges ahead.
“The worst-case scenario for us is that the market is growing and they need a product – but we don’t have the capacity to supply them,” Abhijeet Kohli says. “The advantage we have working with Novo Nordisk Pharmatech is the assurance of quality, assurance of supply, and the excellent relationship we have in place, so that we’re always able to supply the industry with whatever volume they need.”