Leaders Round Table helps support West’s market-led strategy

Leaders in the pharmaceutical industry are expecting rapid growth in the near future. To proactively equip the company for these changes, West recently organized a Leaders Round Table in Ahmedabad, India.

“As we strive to be a market-led organization, it is vitally important that we enhance our understanding of the customers’ perspective,” said Mark Lawler, VP, Sales and Marketing, Asia Pacific. “The round table meeting enabled us to interact with a broad range of industry leaders to hear more about trends and issues they are experiencing.”

Mark, along with Sok Tiang Koh, VP, Scientific Affairs and TCS, Asia Pacific and Diane Paskiet, Director, Scientific Affairs, presented at the meeting that focused on major topics surrounding packaging for injectable pharmaceuticals. Other participants included leaders from West R&D, Packaging, Regulatory and Operations functions and distinguished guests from leading, multi-national injectable pharma companies.

There was a particular focus on key topics relevant to the Indian Pharma industry. The major topics discussed were:

  • The changing face of healthcare in India
  • Changing trends in injectable pharma packaging
  • Key regulatory changes and the impact on the packaging of injectables in India
  • U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention Updates – Extractables and Leachables
  • Regulatory changes around International Council for Harmonization of Technical Requirements for Pharmaceuticals for Human Use

“This meeting provided a wonderful forum in which to engage with key customer representatives to better appreciate their strategic direction and technical concerns, said Sok Tiang Koh. “With this insight, West will be able to augment our solutions to address these specific requirements.”

Based on the success of this round table, West is planning to conduct similar meetings throughout the Asia Pacific Region. Thanks to all who participated and check our website to see when West will be coming to your area.



Taylor Pendergast
Global Communications Associate Specialist

Important Concerns Regarding Volume and Viscosity – Part 2

In Part 1 of this three-part blog series, we reviewed some of the current market trends and challenges specific to biologic drug products, as well as the opportunities within drug delivery for drug products of higher viscosity and greater injection volume. Part 2 will discuss the pipeline and therapeutic areas where larger volume and viscosity are being explored, as well as the impact of these trends to the respective patient population and the overall health delivery system.

During the last several years, we have seen an increasing trend toward the self-administration of injectable drugs, with much of the growth coming from the launch of several monoclonal antibodies to treat inflammation (Arthritis, Psoriasis, Crohn’s Disease). Many of these drug products pair a prefilled syringe with an auto-injector to support safe self-use by patients. If we look at the pipeline for products in development for large molecule therapy, many of the therapies under development follow this same trend as the majority of research and development programs targeting drugs to treat inflammation in the form of antibodies.  Of 196 subcutaneous biologics in development, 94 are antibodies, representing 48% of the pipeline (Roots Analysis).  Other therapeutics areas in the pipeline include metabolic disorders (diabetes, growth hormone deficiency) and oncology (Figure 1).  When considering the larger volume injectable market, many of these pipeline drug products will be evaluated in greater than 2mL dosing, but there is also a large opportunity for intravenous (IV) or intramuscular (IM) drug products to move to a subcutaneous delivery system, which expands the potential for larger volume delivery and self-injection.  The healthy pipeline, in addition to this new opportunity for IV therapy, will contribute to steady biologics growth over the next several years, as outlined in Figure 2 below from Roots Analysis.

subcutaneous-biologics-pipelineFigure 1
Subcutaneous Biologics Market.pngFigure 2

As the market for biologics grows over the next several years, pharmaceutical companies will be tasked with selecting the appropriate delivery device and container for the drug. These decisions can be complex, with injection frequency, dose volume and viscosity, delivery rate and duration, and human factors all contributing to the selection of an appropriate delivery system.  In Part 3 of this blog series, we will discuss the various technologies in drug delivery developed specifically for delivery of drug products with larger volume and higher viscosity.  We will also assess newer innovations in this market and discuss the advantages and disadvantages relative to both the container and delivery system.




Royce Brockett
Senior Product Manager





Roots Analysis 2015; Subcutaneous Biologics: Products, Technologies and Delivery Systems



West Puerto Rico Teams Up at Tour de Cure


Colleagues from West’s Puerto Rico facility joined Johnson & Johnson for the 10th annual Tour de Cure Aguadilla cycling event to benefit the American Diabetes Association. Johnson & Johnson hosted the event at their LifeScan operations and brought in over 1,300 racers–raising nearly $100,000 for the cause. West contributed as a sponsor, entered cyclists and walkers, and raised money at the event through its on-site massage therapy tent. massage

This family event promotes a better lifestyle and helps raise funds for patients with diabetes.

“I was extremely pleased that we had several West employees participate in the event this year,” said Ruben Aguayo, Plant Manager. “It was also a great opportunity to strengthen our relationship and show our commitment to our customer. The energy and excitement were noticeable.”


Congratulations to our inaugural cycling crew on their 30k & 60k rides and the employees who completed the 5k walk! To learn more about the philanthropic work West does in the community, visit our website.






Shari Krusniak
Marketing Manager, The Tech Group



Flip-Off® Seal Family of Products Attracts Growing Number of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers

Known for a commitment to excellence in elastomeric components, West has complemented its vial closure portfolio with the Flip-Off® seal brand. Particularly in its ability to provide solutions for aseptic and clean crimping, the Flip-Off seal demonstrates potential to become an industry standard.


The highest quality offering is the Flip-Off® CCS seal. It is used for aseptic crimping and its name reflects the key product attributes: Clean, Certified and Sterilized (CCS). Customers crimping in an aseptic area are looking for a low specified particle level (in line with grade A classification and comparable to ISO 5 guidelines)1,2 and a pre-specified bioburden prior to sterilization. These features, combined with an optimal seal manufacturing process, give pharmaceutical manufacturers the option of smooth, clean operation within an isolator.

Flip-Off® Plus is the newest member in the Flip-Off seal portfolio and is designed to meet the needs for clean crimping outside of the aseptic core under Grade A, but under constant Grade A air supply (laminar flow)². Although less stringent regulations apply for the clean crimping process compared to crimping in an aseptic area, the Annex 1 of EMA regulations require a specified bioburden for sealing². Flip-Off Plus was launched to support fill-finish operations to comply with the needs for bioburden speciation and offer a high-quality, easy to use component for drugs marketed within the EMA jurisdiction and beyond.

For pharmaceutical customers, West delivers consistency and reliability. The same     high-quality standards are applied to all sterilized seals and elastomeric components. These offerings are ready to be processed immediately and guaranteed to meet tight component quality levels, which may reduce complexity in an already highly complex pharmaceutical manufacturing environment. Additionally, relying on West products and services can potentially reduce downtime and simplify inventory management.

To learn more about the Flip-Off seal brand, visit the West website.


Miriam Beyer
Marketing Manager, Vial Containment & Delivery





  1. Remington: Essentials of Pharmaceutics; Michael J. Akers, PhD (2013), Chapter 26 Parenteral Preparations, p. 495-532
  2. EUROPEAN COMMISSION; EudraLex; The Rules Governing Medicinal Products in the European Union; Volume 4: EU Guidelines to Good Manufacturing Practice, Medicinal Products for Human and Veterinary Use; Annex 1: Manufacture of Sterile Medicinal Products.


Flip-Off® is a registered trademark of West Pharmaceutical Services, Inc., in the United States and other jurisdictions.

A Well-Deserved Celebration for West St. Petersburg

As a special thank you to this year’s Director’s Cup Award winners, Eric M. Green, President and CEO; Annette Favorite, Sr. VP and Chief HR Officer; and Tom Gribbin, VP, Operations, Americas, served a catered dinner to all three shifts at our St. Petersburg facility. This visit from leadership provided an opportunity to personally recognize everyone for their commitment to safety, quality, productivity, lean programs and community service.


This spring, during the Annual Shareholder Meeting, St. Petersburg was awarded the Director’s Cup for setting notable records in several key metrics during 2015, including:

  • Reducing recordable safety incidences by 60% and implementing two new safety incentive programs
  • Improving several quality metrics and cutting internal reject and customer complaint rates by roughly 50%
  • Achieving all-time high records of increased accuracy on customer complaint report submissions and reduced customer complaint report turn-around times

In the true spirit of West philanthropy, all leftovers from the event were donated to the Fischer House–a local shelter for veterans and military families–and the St. Petersburg Police Department.

West’s Director’s Cup Award was established by the Board of Trustees to recognize outstanding team performance by West facilities around the world. The award is determined annually by an independent senior leadership committee.

Congratulations to our St. Petersburg facility for continuing to raise the bar, demonstrate core Company values, and evidence a commitment to delivering the best to our customers.



Taylor Pendergast
Global Communications Associate Specialist

The 2016 Internship Program – A Summer Well Spent

West’s Global 2016 Internship Program has, once again, quickly come to a close. This year a group of over 40 interns, chosen from a pool of 1,156 applicants, provided a wealth of knowledge, new perspectives, and unique strengths and skill sets to the business. Interns were placed at our West locations around the globe.

West’s internships give students the opportunity to delve into a wide array of disciplines and projects. These interns work alongside our industry experts and tackle projects where they have the potential to make an impact on West’s future, while increasing their own business acumen.

Priyansha Chadha, our Scottsdale facility’s Lean intern, ran a metrology staffing analysis enabling our QA team to plan for the next five years. Our Exton facility’s Analytical Lab Services interns, Keenan Pearson and Samantha Sholes, used preparative gas chromatography to test the purity of samples which will help prepare West for stricter FDA regulation guidelines. Finally, our Israel facility’s intern, Evyatar Ofir, had the chance to work on the implementation of West’s Product Lifecycle Management System.

“My time at West taught me how the design and manufacturing elements for pharmaceutical packaging and delivery systems and science come together to create a comprehensive solution,” said Exton’s Analytical Laboratory intern, Keenan Pearson. “I am excited to apply what I learned from my internship at West to my future educational and professional endeavors.”

Eric Green and Keenan Pearson

Eric M. Green, President and Chief Executive Office with Analytical Laboratory Intern, Keenan Pearson

Employees were especially impressed with the engagement from this year’s team of interns. It was evident that they gained an appreciation of West’s collaborative corporate culture, built confidence in their ability to communicate with all levels of the business, and established a concrete understanding of West’s role in the pharmaceutical industry. The 2016 interns demonstrated great proficiency in working on complex, biotechnical and biosimilar data analysis projects, strategic marketing research, and development of scientific methodology.

“We are grateful for the contributions that all of this year’s interns brought to West,” said Annette Favorite, Sr. VP and Chief Human Resources Officer. “We benefitted from their diverse skill sets and insight into important ongoing and new Company projects. We hope that this program has allowed them to expand upon what they are learning in the classroom to better prepare them for the world of work.”

Learn more about West’s Ambassador Internship Program here.




Taylor Pendergast
Global Communications Associate Specialist



West Employees Race to Support Children


Runners – Mike Treadaway, Aaron Carrasco, Phylicia Zarnosky, Derek Roseman, Brian Meines, Mark Snyder, Erin Snyder, Kim Koning, Carson Koning, Ed Leon, Natalie Leon and Dave Morton
Van Drivers – Dan Trzybinski and Kurt Knoertzer
Team Manager – Tim Smith
Bike Support – Brandon Ellis
Catering Service – Chris Palmer

From August 5-6, 12 employees from West’s Grand Rapids facility participated in a 200 mile, overnight relay race. The Fred 200 Mile Relay spans the Fred Meijer White Pine Trail through Comstock Park and Cadillac, MI. This was the third year that our Grand Rapids, Michigan facility coordinated a team for the Relay.

The Fred 200 Mile Relay includes 36 “spurs” or legs, ranging from 2 to 9.5 miles per leg. The West team included runners, van drivers, bike support and a catering service.

Over the past three years, the team has raised over $18,000 for the Company’s employee-led fundraising campaign—West without Borders. This year the team’s fundraising efforts benefited the Children’s Healing Center in Grand Rapids, MI. The Children’s Healing Center is the first of its kind in the nation, and provides a safe, fun and healing environment, where kids living with weak immune systems and their families can connect with each other.

Congratulations team! To learn more about West without Borders visit our website.




Taylor Pendergast
Global Communications Associate Specialist