Olon Investing in R&D, Biotech Manufacturing, HPAPIs, & Sustainability 

Olon is a global leader in the development and production of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) for the CDMO and generic markets, integrating chemical synthesis and biological processes while always embracing the highest international safety, quality, and environmental standards. 

The Olon Group has just approved and released its official investment plan for 2023; we are glad to officially disclose the investment plan. The total value is more than EUR 90 million. This level of investment confirms a trend that we have reported over the last five years of increasing investment to be a partner of choice to enable our client’s molecules to enter the market successfully. It represents more than 160% growth in the total amount of investments, which are used to constantly develop technological platforms. It represents a long-term program in which the Olon Group has invested substantial human and economic resources to explore new technologies or new applications for existing technologies. The aim is to facilitate the production of new pharmaceuticals and improve the quality and sustainability of the manufacturing process for those products that we already produce. 

Olon peaked with the level of its investment in 2022, and in, 2023, we expect to be above the peak of 2022. Major investments, some of them already concluded, include the new R&D hub that we will have at our site in Rodano, Italy. We are expecting to enlarge our capabilities in synthetic chemistry. Of course, this is a state-of-the-art facility, and we are expecting to boost the development of the activity even further.  

The strategy is underpinned by three pillars, that are reflected in the technology platforms in which we will invest significantly this year. 

Biotech Manufacturing Platform. “We are massively investing to expand the capacity of our two Biotech Centers based in Italy,” stated Mr. Paolo Tubertini, CEO of the Olon Group. “The investment will support a structured and focused plan with the aim of expanding capacity and capability to develop and produce therapeutic peptides obtained through biotechnology. Olon is developing strong know-how for the development of rDNA peptides and proteins, consolidating its expertise to produce the peptide target quickly and easily. The goal is to further strengthen its offering to global clients in terms of complex recombinant peptides with high efficiency, repeatability, and purity, at high levels of consistency. We are creating a new line dedicated to oral injectables. Within the first half of 2023, we’ll inaugurate a new manufacturing area in Settimo entirely dedicated to the production on a global scale of alternative proteins produced via microbial fermentation.  

High and Extremeley High Containment for Highly Active APIs, including toxins. “We’ve completed the new high containment line in Rodano,” said Mr. Paolo Tubertini, CEO, Olon Group. “This expansion enables us to serve the customer along all the stages of the scale-up, in conjunction with our sites. Starting with a few grams or macrolab in the GMP laboratory, we move onto batches of 1 or 2 kg, then several tens of kilograms, followed by the 30 to 150 kg range, which we can produce with the new line, until reaching the largest quantities.  

We’ve kicked off the construction of an extremely advanced manufacturing line in Rodano. The very new high-contaiment line will be dedicated to the production of very active and toxic products such as payloads and payload–liners for antibody drug conjugates (ADCs). This represents the broadest range of high-potency API (HPAPI) handling expertise for an API manufacturer. Olon is one of the few in the market able to integrate every level of containment from the early phase of API development through commercial manufacturing from a few grams of APIs up to hundreds of kilograms.  

We have developed a flexible manufacturing platform that supports the customer at every stage of drug development and also during commercialization, meeting API production needs, which can range from a few kg to hundreds of kg per year. 

Finally, sustainability and the transition to renewable energy. We are installing co-generators and solar panel systems. Since 2021, we’ve been carrying on investments in five out of the 11 Olon sites to install advanced solar panel systems to generate renewable energy. By Q2 of 2023, we will have installed solar systems with total capacity of 17 Mw in our global manufacturing network. 

The aggregate data of the entire Olon Group over the last five years shows how our commitment to the environment has led to significant results, with the substantial halving of CO2 emissions, water and energy consumption, and waste production.” 

So, the dynamics of the generics market is changing continuously. Now, of course, the supply chain and the robustness of the supply chain is becoming mandatory in order to have success in the market. Olon is carefully selecting areas of expansion, so that we can commit where we think that we can have the opportunity to establish a resilient supply chain.  

“For the future, Olon always grows through organic and inorganic means,” stated Mr. Paolo Tubertini, CEO, Olon Group. “We have 11 sites; all those 11 sites have been acquired in the last 20 years. And we are a specialized company in the [API] production, we have no interest for the time being in finished dosage form production. But we want to continuously enlarge the offer of technology and enlarge the product portfolio, enlarge the services that we are offering to the whole industry. 

Olon is active in both the generics and innovative space and wants to grow while balancing in order to have long-term sustainability of the company, in order to be really well balanced and to leverage on all the aspects of the industry, putting together all the synergies that we can have internally in order to be able to commit to our goals for the market.”