CPhI NA / Informex - 5 minutes with... - page 8

Megan Williamson, VP of Injection Systems at
Datwyler Sealing Solutions
Please tell us about your latest expansion project.
We broke ground in December 2016 at a brand new greenfield site in Middletown, Delaware.
This new facility will be highly automated and have the latest technology. It will be focused on very
high quality elastomeric components for injectable devices for the biologics and biosimilars markets,
such as stoppers for vials, plungers, tip caps and needle shields for prefilled syringes, cartridges, and
vials. The bar is constantly being raised in this industry by regulation. We reached out to many of our
customers before finalizing the concept of this facility and asked them where they found gaps in
the market, where the market and regulations are headed and what they need from their suppliers
to close these gaps. This facility is the third of its kind under the First Line brand name. Our first was at
our facility in Belgium, the second is under construction now in India and will be and running in the
second half of 2017. This one in the USA will be producing commercial samples in Q3 2018.
As well as customer needs, was this driven by growth in the injectables market as a whole?
Yes, indeed. I think Datwyler is in a unique position. We have a great reputation in Europe but we are
not as well known here in the US. We are aiming to increase our brand awareness and demonstrate
to our customers that we can be a partner who understands their needs. The US is the fastest growing pharmaceutical market in the
world, especially in relation to biologics, which are often injectables. We have the confidence in this market to invest in a brand new
$100 million facility. With India, it was a bit more due to convenience – we had a new facility installed a few years ago, so the upgrade
to a First Line facility was that much easier, but the goal was the same: to be able to serve the individual markets in which these
markets are located.
In what ways does Datwyler serve the pharma market?
We serve the healthcare market in three different segments: components for vials, components for prefilled syringes and cartridges,
and components for diagnostics and medical devices. We also have three other segments: consumer goods, automotive and civil
engineering, all of it based on our core competency in elastomers. These are on a very different volume scale, of course. Datwyler is
100 years old and its core business was in rubber manufacturing but it has expanded into a variety of niche markets to capitalise on the
expertise it has in elastomers.
Have you attended other CPhI shows?
Yes, we have participated at many other CPhIs and this was seen as a natural extension of that activity. We have found the show to be
fruitful, even after day 1 and have had a lot of traffic already – good contacts and good conversations. For us, this region is a hotbed
of the pharmaceutical industry – many of our customers are in Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Delaware and around,
so Philadelphia is a convenient location. They range from the pharma companies developing the drugs to system suppliers and device
manufacturers, CMOs and small start-ups. We really serve a wide array of different injectable users, who all have the same basic needs
and face the same regulatory drivers.
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