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- 03/25/2022

DCAT Week 2022 Interview: Dr Uwe Westeppe, Vice President of Sales at KD Pharma

Chimica Oggi-Chemistry Today

“Designed by you, scaled-up by us!”

Highlights from our discussion with Dr Uwe Westeppe, Vice President of Sales at KD Pharma


Current landscape

Supply chain issues have been a problem for the past two years, reflecting widespread interruptions to manufacturing and distribution at the height of the COVID pandemic. KD Pharma managed the situation by using its optimized supply chain, as well as capitalizing on its relationships with reliable suppliers, with whom the company has been working for many years. This meant that KD Pharma was able to avoid any issues with production. Despite some minor delays in shipping products to customers, KD Pharma weathered the COVID storm relatively well.

Now, emerging from the pandemic, the current landscape for contract manufacturing and research in pharma is as excellent. Pharma companies have a lot of new and very promising products in the pipeline and, as they focus on their own core competencies, they are outsourcing development and production of APIs and drug products to CDMOs.

One trend that is driving opportunities for many CDMOs, including KD Pharma, is on-shoring manufacturing and domestic sourcing. In particular, as Western pharma companies look for partners who are closer to home, competition from the East – which had been fierce for a while – is not as strong as it once was.

“We received a lot of inquiries from Western customers who are looking for Western suppliers to balance their geopolitical risk,” explains Uwe. “We have meetings this week here at DCAT to discuss exactly these topics.”

KD Pharma is a very dynamic, fast-growing company, that is constantly enlarging its technology toolbox for chemical transformations, purification and separation, and encapsulation under cGMP.

“We can support customers over the whole life cycle of their products from process development, piloting, and commercial production,” says Uwe. “We follow our motto: Designed by you, scaled-up by us!

Expanding capabilities

Ready to meet the demand arising from opportunities in today’s pharma landscape, at the end of 2021 KD Pharma announced further expansion to its CDMO capabilities in the UK. KD Pharma’s site in the UK has all necessary capabilities to be a full-service CDMO and API producer. The facility is highly automated, and the site has additional space for future capability expansions.

“We have a lot of technologies that can do far more than manufacture our traditional product portfolio,” says Uwe. “This is why, in 2019, we started to transform KD Pharma’s UK site into a world-class CDMO facility with capabilities in lipids and small molecule synthesis. The expansion will end in 2022 with the completion and commissioning of a new multi-purpose cGMP CDMO plant capable of manufacturing small molecules from lab to production scale.”

Global factors

Like other industries, Pharma is influenced by a great number of external factors. As the world emerges from the COVID pandemic, with a greater focus on sustainability and Net Zero than ever before, new geopolitical issues, such as the conflict in Ukraine, will also impact operations.

Referring to the conflict in Ukraine, Uwe agreed that the situation has so far led to a huge price increase both for energy and raw materials.

“Security of supply is still a given,” he says. “But this cost increase will result in higher prices for our

customers, if the situation does not improve. We will see the consequences of recent developments in the next couple of months.”

Referring to the continually increasing focus on sustainability, Uwe pointed out that sustainability is a

fundamental pre-requisite for anybody working in the pharma industry today.

“We implement continuous process improvements to minimize raw material and energy inputs, use of bio-renewable solvents, and recycling of solvents” he says. “In addition, our natural raw materials are certified to have been produced from environmentally and socially responsible sources.


DCAT Week is the premier global event held annually in New York City for companies engaged in the Bio/Pharmaceutical manufacturing value chain. It is hosted by the Drug, Chemical & Associated Technologies Association (DCAT), a not-for-profit, corporate member-supported, and volunteer-led global business development association for companies engaged in the Bio/Pharmaceutical manufacturing value chain. Learn more at