Contract-research organization (CRO) Quintiles is doubling the size of its Singapore operations, an expansion that will produce Asia-Pacific’s largest clinical development organization, according to the company.
The Research Triangle Park, N.C.-based CRO currently occupies close to 40,000 square feet of space in three locations in Singapore, but, in late 2009, Quintiles Central Laboratory and Clinical Development Services offices will relocate to an 80,000-square-foot space in the Cintech IV building now under construction in Singapore’s Science Park One. “We are projecting continued strong growth [in Singapore], and this new facility gives us the room we will need,” said Anand Tharmaratnam, M.D., head of clinical development for Quintiles Asia Pacific. “The new location also will allow us to work more efficiently, share best practices and deliver truly turnkey solutions to our customers.” The new space will hold about 400 employees, almost double the 225 employees now in Singapore.
“We continue to invest in new talent in Singapore, and we are also adding new delivery and corporate functions in Singapore so our headcount numbers are continually growing,” said Tharmaratnam. Singapore has emerged as a leader for early-stage clinical trials outsourcing in the past decade.
Quintiles’ Asia-Pacific presence has grown rapidly since the CRO entered the region in 1993 with offices in Japan and Australia. Since establishing its Singapore offices in 1995, Quintiles has conducted more than 1,000 studies involving more than 6,000 sites and 160,000 patients in the region. As the home of the CRO’s regional headquarters, Singapore holds many advantages for the company, Tharmaratnam said.
“Firstly, a significant proportion of our customers are in Singapore and all of them are within a seven-hour direct flight from Singapore. Singapore is also connected by direct flights to a lot of our U.S. and European offices,” he said. “Secondly, we are able to hire talent with multinational company experience in Singapore, and we are able to attract foreign talent to relocate to Singapore who find it a stable, secure and welcoming environment to live in as a foreigner. Thirdly, it is an attractive place from which to manage a business with very high ethical and transparent governance standards with an effective tax structure. Fourth, it is increasingly becoming a global hub for scientific excellence and innovation.”