As the Irish pharma sector continues to grow at pace, smaller companies offering out-sourced niche-aligned services are also benefiting. One such company is Q1 Scientific, based in Waterford, which was named start-up of the year at this year’s Pharma Awards.
Specialising in the provision of the highest-quality stability storage facilities, the company offers the pharmaceutical, medical devices and bio-sciences industries here an outsourcing option which many are deciding to take. “We’ve noticed that there’s definitely an appetite now in the Irish pharma sector for out-sourcing to specialists such as ourselves,” explained Louise Grubb, the chief executive of Q1 Scientific. She added: “That’s not just true of smaller pharma companies, but larger ones as well. Because we offer stateof- the-art stability storage at our purpose-built facility in Waterford, as well as other highly specialised services, companies see sense and value for money in using us rather than doing all of this in-house.” The emergence of pharma companies focusing mainly in research and development has assisted Q1 Scientific particularly.
The company, established at the end of 2012, offers environmentally controlled and monitored stability storage facilities to meet all international regulatory standards. With tightly controlled temperatures and humidity rates at its spacious cGMP facility, it can store, manage and test samples over the life cycle of their stability plans, which can range from three to five years in most cases. The service offered by Q1 Scientific is unique in the Irish market Grubb explained. “At the moment there is no other company in Ireland which specialises in stability storage in this way. That creates great opportunities for us as a company, and we’ve been expanding at pace since we opened for business just over two years ago.”
By the first half of next year Q1 Scientific plans to expand operations on its site in Waterford to meet demand. Currently, it employs six highly- skilled staff members who have a range of qualifications in pharma related disciplines, from quality control to laboratory analysis. And the company’s chief executive believes receiving the start-up company of the year award will further boost its profile within the industry. She told The Sunday Business Post: “For a company in its early stages of development such as ours, this award is hugely significant and so very much appreciated. It helps in terms of building our credibility amongst our peers within the pharma sector in Ireland, and will help us reach more potential customers.”