Ube Industries, Ltd. (President Kazumasa Tsunemi) is to supply, on a contract basis, a key intermediate for a new development product for AstraZeneca PLC, one of the world's leading pharmaceutical companies. The supply of the intermediate will start during the current fiscal year.
Ube has received FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) approval for the manufacturing of this intermediate and will actively develop and expand the custom synthesis business for pharmaceutical users.
Annual growth of Ube's pharmaceutical business, custom synthesis and contract manufacture of pharmaceutical active bulks and intermediates, continues to exceed 25% and Ube has positioned this business as one of its core businesses. In order to meet substantial needs from domestic as well as overseas major pharmaceutical companies, a third pharmaceutical production plant is under construction. (Total capital investment for the plant will be approximately ¥4 billion, and the operation is scheduled to commence in March 2003)
Ube has a lot of new projects with pharmaceutical customers including AstraZeneca PLC and considers that a new GMP production facility will be necessary every two to three years after the third plant starts operation. We are investigating possibilities to have another new manufacturing site including a potential acquisition of production facility in Europe or U.S.A.
We expect that the success at the recent FDA Pre-approval inspections will trigger to accelerate the global expansion of Ube's pharmaceutical business and that its sales would target ¥30 billion in fiscal 2005.