Pharma outsourcing continues to swell

Outsourcing is still on roll--it's just not rolling quite as fast as it did last year. Such is the conclusion of Contract Pharma's 2008 outsourcing survey, which found that 52 percent of companies plan to boost their outsourcing spend by 6 percent or more, compared with 62 percent last year.

At the same time, fewer companies expected spending the same or less on outsourcing this year--16 percent versus 22 percent last year. So while more pharma firms plan to farm out more work, they're not expecting their outsourcing growth to be quite as brisk this year as last.

Another interesting group of stats in the survey dealt with Asian contracts. Only 30 percent of respondents said they would probably or definitely send work to Asia this year; 46 percent said they probably or definitely wouldn't. But the breakdown by company showed that Big Pharma and generics makers were most likely to ink an Asian deal in 2008: 33 percent and 36 percent, respectively, said they'd "definitely" outsource to Asia this year. Another 7 percent and 14 percent said "probably." To read up on preferred vendors and more, check out the full survey.

- see the brief in Contract Pharma