Bachem Secures Major Peptide Contracts

22.09.2022 - Bachem, a Swiss specialist developer and manufacturer of peptides and oligonucleotides, has announced the signing of two major contracts for supplying large volumes of peptides over the next two years. The orders are worth 25 million and 150 million Swiss francs for 2023 and 2024, respectively.

The name of the customer was not disclosed, but Bachem said the parties are currently negotiating for further “significantly” higher orders for the following years.

“The need for peptide manufacturing and development capabilities across the biopharma industry is growing at a fast pace. That is why we are rapidly and consistently expanding our manufacturing base,” said CEO Thomas Meier.

Bachem is currently implementing an investment program across all its sites to expand capacity. One of the projects is the addition of a new large-scale facility in Bubendorf, Switzerland. Construction started last November and the plant is scheduled to open in 2024.

The project is being undertaken in two phases. The first will see an investment of 220 million Swiss francs, with a second sum of 150 million Swiss francs for phase two. In its final form, the facility will more than double capacity at Bubendorf.

In addition, Bachem is in the advanced stages of selecting a location for a third site in Switzerland as the company aims to strengthen its production network by the end of the decade. It said land reserves at the Bubendorf site will be exhausted in the medium term. Capacity expansions are also underway in Vionnaz, Switzerland; Torrance and Vista in California, USA; and St. Helens in the UK.

In April this year, Bachem announced it had entered into a strategic collaboration with major drugmaker Eli Lilly to develop and manufacture APIs based on oligonucleotides. Under the terms of the agreement, Bachem is supplying appropriate engineering infrastructure and expertise to implement Lilly’s novel manufacturing technology.

Furthermore, Bachem is providing R&D and production personnel at its Bubendorf site to develop and manufacture GMP-grade material for Lilly’s oligonucleotide-based investigational medicines.

For its part, Lilly committed to place manufacturing projects with Bachem over the next seven years, with increasing demands for material following the successful implementation of its technology. Annual order volumes could potentially reach about 100 million Swiss francs, depending on Bachem achieving certain milestones and definite volumes ordered by Lilly.

Author: Elaine Burridge, Freelance Journalist