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Instant Innovation In The Supply Chain



At the most recent Outsourced Pharma Boston conference, Anand Ekambaram, Executive Director, Global Technical Operations, Merck, posed this question to a panel of pharma and biotech executives:

“Is there a larger strategy directed at this kind of small “i” innovation? Because these innovations also bring risk with them. For example, the clinical developers are of the mindset, ‘Give me something that’ll work, that’s proven. Let’s get this product launched on time and reduce the risk as much as possible. We can save the improvements for the second generation.’”

This is the second of two articles based on the Outsourced Pharma Boston (April 26-27) conference session, Learning to Fly: How to Support Incremental Innovative Solutions.

Louis Garguillo, chief editor of and Conference Chair highlighted the exchange from executives from Biogen, Merck and others in this recent editorial, Instant Innovation In The Supply Chain. Read more for further insight into the discussion from the event.

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Risk And Small "i" Innovation In Pharma Outsourcing



The Summit on Modern Day Drug Development and Manufacturing Outsourcing (Outsourced Pharma Boston, April 26-27 ) purposely lead off with a session on incremental – or small “i” – innovation. That’s not because we were looking for “baby steps” to ease into tougher discussions. In fact, the mission was to kick-start us into advanced contemplations between drug sponsors and service providers. Mission accomplished. Here’s the first of two articles on what transpired. By Louis Garguilo, Chief Editor of


Read Article

Outsourced Pharma Boston 2017 Poll Questions & Results

There was a lot of excitement around the Outsourced Pharma Boston interactive poll questions. Attendees engaged with the app to answer poll questions during the panel discussions with requests to share the questions and results.

Click here for the Outsourced Pharma Boston 2017 agenda.



View Poll Results

The Three Pillars Of Industry Conferences

“Working at a contract drug development and manufacturing organization years ago, I had direct reports stationed around the globe. Among the lessons learned: There’s an industry-related conference somewhere on practically every day of the year.

Subsequent to that role, and while discussing my joining Outsourced Pharma as editor, the idea of starting up a new conference was mentioned. My carefully nuanced reply was: “A conference? The last thing this industry needs is another conference!”

Somehow, I still got the job. And over the past four years I’ve been proven woefully wrong. Here’s why.”

Louis Garguilo, Chief Editor and Conference Chair | Outsourced Pharma

Three Pillars of Conferences

Every organization – and each individual within – has specific needs and objectives. Yet, we can identify three overarching criteria for attending most conferences.

What do you think? Drop Louis a note if you have thoughts - we'd love to hear from you.

“A summit on modern-day drug development and manufacturing outsourcing” is the title of the next Outsourced Pharma conference and exhibition in Boston, April 26-27. Register if you'd like to attend.

Pressure and Molten Magma

Costs and Pressure Rise... best efforts not withstanding

“Instead of focusing on money, you talk openly about ‘value,’ Well, what is that? Or it’s all about ‘relationships.’ The industry talks partnership in public, but behind closed doors, aren’t prices and costs closing or breaking outsourcing business deals?”
Moderator, Outsourced Pharma San Diego, 2016.

Louis Garguilo, OutsourcedPharma chief editor focused his attention on discussion from the 2016 San Diego Outsourced Pharma event in his recent editorial, The Price At My CMO Isn’t Right … But How Do I Know? and panel guests left no molten rock uncovered.

Improving partnerships, smarter procurement procedures, streamlined supply chains, improved partnerships … despite these efforts and some good results, our costs to develop and manufacture drugs still seems to go up, while the pressure to reduce drug prices bubbles up to the surface. Your CEO – and society – is looking for maximum efficiency from all parts of your business.

Join us for further discussion at the panel, Costs and price pressures rise…. best efforts notwithstanding and take a hard look at the structural, systemic and other financial inputs into your outsourcing. Join the following panelists to discuss this topic in more detail:

  • George Avgerinos, Sr. VP Operations | Fortress Biotechnology
  • Susan Dexter, Managing Director | Latham Biopharm
  • Anand Ekambaram, Executive Director, Global Technical Operations | Merck
  • BJ Hull, VP/GM | Emergent BioSolutions
  • Brian James, SVP Operations | Rondaxe Pharma(Moderator)



Register Today


Reflecting on 2016 and looking forward to 2017

“Over the past three years, we’ve continued to improve upon our model of open discussion and debate to uncover challenges facing – and between – the drug sponsors and owners and the contract development and manufacturing organizations. We look forward to building on this platform in 2017, and invite any professional in the industry involved with outsourcing or an external supply chain to join us.”
Louis Garguilo, Outsourced Pharma Event Chair and Chief Editor of

We wrapped up our final event of 2016 in San Francisco this last October. For the first time, technology companies, venture capital firms and others from Silicon Valley and elsewhere were invited to join the Outsourced Pharma community to focus on the topic of “Drug Development and Manufacturing Outsourcing in an Era of Technology.”

Check out this press release with details on the event and what to look forward to in 2017.

The IT titans of Silicon Valley should get together with the biopharma industry and its CMOs

Register if you'd like to attend one of our 2017 shows.

Silicon Valley, meet biopharma (and its CMOs)

“We could all utilize better workflow tools for project management in our dev. and mfg. operations. Everything from data integrity and storage, project management and logistics. But right now, we’re not sure Silicon Valley recognizes what we do. We aren’t aware of specific solutions they might offer. We should engage to find advanced solutions.”
Joe Guiles, Head of Development at Agilent Technologies

What do you think? Read more about why we're offering up a valley-twist on Outsourced Pharma this November in San Francisco. Drop Louis a note if you have thoughts - we'd love to hear from you as the agenda takes shape.

More on SV + CMOs

The IT titans of Silicon Valley should get together with the biopharma industry and its CMOs

Outsourced Pharma San Francisco, Nov 1-2, will bring together Silicon Valley, biopharma, and CMOs. Register if you'd like to attend.

Enter ... the archive!

Our past programs archive is live! If you're looking to learn a little bit about our events over the years, we've got the page for you. Here, we archive past programs (including date/venue, sponsoring organizations, speakers, and agendas) and all of the content that's come out of the programs. Take a look!

  • Past Programs

    #4 | Boston 2016
    #3 | San Francisco 2015
    #2 | San Diego 2015
    #1 | San Francisco 2014



Up next: San Diego (Aug. 2016), San Francisco (Nov. 2016), Boston (Spring 2017)

Hope for the panel session

If you ask Google, panel sessions can be a real drag (1, 2, 3). But we know a thing or two about putting together a rockstar panel! You’ll know what we’re talking about if you worked this super session into your schedule at BIO 2016:

Beyond the Cutting Edge: How to Enable Life Science Organizations Today for the Societal Challenges of Tomorrow


Our own Rob Wright moderated. The panel was all about (buzz word alert!) innovation – supporting unconventional thinking, knowledge transfer to benefit future initiatives, and how today's tech advancements can tackle big challenges to come.


    However you spent your time at BIO 2016, we hope you had a great show. If the West Coast is home or you visit often, consider adding Outsourced Pharma to your list of must-attend programs. We'll be dishing out eight of our best panel-style sessions this August in San Diego!


    BIO 2016
    BIO 2016
    BIO 2016
    Shout out to the twitterverse for the pictures. @Rakhshita @jenchang1 @ProjectionInc

What we learned from Shire

There was a lot of excitement around our Shire-focused session in Boston … and the panel did not disappoint. Highlights from the conversation are condensed in these two new articles on our parent publication,


Creating Shire’s Outsourcing Model

$7 billion in annual sales and fully reliant on outsourcing … How does it all fit together? How is it managed?

Read the article.

Mani Sundararajan, VP & Head Global Pharmaceutical Technology at Shire, discusses the Shire approach to outsourcing.
Charlene Banard, SVP Quality at Shire, discusses M&A strategy at the outsourcing giant.

Shire's Approach to CMOs & M&As

On being the quintessential “acquisitive company” … how a 3-pronged strategy for CMO integration makes it all work.

Check out the story.

Many thanks to our friends at Shire for putting together this top-notch session:
Mani Sundararajan (VP & Head Global Pharma Technology), Srini Tenjarla (Head Global Pharma Sciences), Charlene Banard (SVP Quality)

Looking to the future with Allergan SVP

We can hardly wait to bring "the next 5 years in outsourcing" panel to San Diego this August! And neither can Sesha Neervannan, the latest addition to the panelists who will lead the discussion. Sesha is SVP Pharmaceutical Development at Allergan where he leads teams to develop small molecule and biologics drug products. To celebrate, we visited the Life Science Leader magazine archives and dug out Sesha's forward-looking commentary on biologics and biosimilars. Enjoy!

Everything you need to know about the next five years in outsourcing.
  • How is the shift toward biologics and biosimilars changing the life sciences landscape? What should executives be doing to capitalize?

    "More companies are adopting the “modality-independent” approach (i.e., agnostic to whether the drug is a chemical or a biologic) to finding a therapeutic, which is a shift from the previous pharma versus biotech dichotomy. This is enabling technologies to cross over, and organizations are able to think broadly with more innovations. For example, a drug delivery technology typically applied only to a small molecule drug now can be married with a biologic or biosimilar, thus creating a new therapeutic that has a different profile and may have broader benefits. Biosimilars could be made into biobetters. As biologics mature, product differentiation will be the anchor for any new development program. Success now depends on how well these approaches are proactively strategized and executed so that both therapeutic and economic benefits can be achieved."

    Sesha Neervannan is SVP Pharmaceutical Development at Allergan and oversees a variety of CMC drug development activities from early discovery to commercialization. He will be speaking at Outsourced Pharma in San Diego on "Everything you need to know about the next five years in outsourcing."