Combined pharmaceutical freeze drying service proves a success in China for GEA Lyophil

It was in November 2010 that GEA Pharma Systems acquired Beijing Sino-German Tianhe Technology in Beijing to create GEA Lyophil (Beijing) Ltd.

Since then, the company has quadrupled turnover and enhanced its customer service by blending German quality and Chinese economy to provide a unique combined offering to its pharmaceutical clients.

Jinbin Tang, MD, GEA Lyophil (Beijing) Ltd. said that the market had changed in China since the introduction of new requirements for GMP production. This had increased the requirement for high quality pharmaceutical freeze drying lines, especially in combination with ALUS® (Automatic Load and Unload Systems), a technology in which GEA Lyophil in Germany are a recognised world authority.

"The key for us is to make sure we use the facilities and talents of the Chinese and German manufacturing centres fully," he explained. "We have made freeze drying machines in China for many years however it is GEA Lyophil, Germany that is the true master of ALUS®. By combining both technologies, we have the ability to provide our customers with complete, cost-effective GMP production lines with the quality and security of outcome that would be expected from a German manufacturer."

Heinrich Meintrup, Managing Director of GEA Lyophil in Germany agreed. "Having this combined option allows us to blend the benefits of German quality with a more cost-effective approach. We have never been willing to play the 'low cost' game, it just doesn't work, but this quality / price performance model makes our offering unique."

The main markets for GEA Lyophil in China come from the pharmaceutical companies who recognise that they need to use recognised, top-quality equipment to compete on their local market as well as on a world export stage. "Most of our customers are making anti-cancer drugs, antibiotics or expensive biological products where top quality, security of outcome and reliable containment are essential," said Jinbin Tang. "They consider our lines to represent the image of their companies."

Since 2010, this approach has allowed GEA Lyophil (Beijing) Ltd. to quadruple its turnover and expand its customer base to include the top-end customers that require leading technology and also provide the economy necessary for those that do not have such critical requirements. Although China is beginning to suffer from less rapid growth than in recent years both Jinbin Tang and Heinrich Meintrup are optimistic about the outlook in China. "We expect another big jump this and next year because of the new GMP regulations," said Jinbin Tang. "Beyond that we still expect above average growth from the pharmaceutical sector."

One product that is proving very popular in China is the GEA Lyophil range of price competitive pharmaceutical freeze dryers SMART LYO®: a system that is based on modular units that have been made using proven technology and our excellent China manufacturing skills and techniques. This keeps the cost down without compromising quality, performance or system architecture / flexibility; makes validation and documentation easier; and reduces delivery times.

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