Temperature control, track and trace, global distribution: Cryoport and Mitsubishi set up alliance for Japan and APAC region

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

© GettyImages/LeoWolfert
© GettyImages/LeoWolfert

Related tags Logistics cold-chain cell and gene therapy APAC Japan

Cold chain logistics provider, Cryoport, has established a multi-year strategic partnership with Japan’s Mitsubishi Logistics Corporation (MLC).

The “strategic alliance”​ is designed to provide integrated, end-to-end distribution solutions for specialty cell and gene therapies that demand stringent temperature control, track and trace systems and global distribution. 

"We face fragmented competition in Japan and globally. Cryoport is the clear market leader and is defining the industry standard,"​ commented Stefanovich.

The partners expect to realize reliable and seamless distribution services for biopharma and pharmaceutical companies in Japan and in other APAC markets.

Mitsubishi Logistics has been one of the leading logistics providers in Japan for over 130 years; it currently has more than 5,000 employees and saw revenue of around US$1.9bn in 2020.

Cryoport is currently servicing 561 cell and gene therapy clinical trials and eight commercially approved therapies globally. This includes a number of clinical trials as well as three commercially approved therapies in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region: Kymriah by Novartis (approved in Japan, Singapore, and Australia), Yescarta by Gilead (approved in Japan and China) and Breyanzi by Bristol Myers (approved in Japan).

Capturing new business

It is continuing to build out its position to support the growing number of commercial therapies in anticipation of the next wave of expected commercial approvals in the APAC region.

Robert Stefanovich, chief financial officer, treasurer and corporate secretary of Cryoport, told BioPharma-Reporter:

“The partnership with Mitsubishi Logistics enables us to better support our current clinical trials and commercial therapies as well as capture new business from Japan-based/focused biopharma and other global pharma companies that will have a future need to distribute commercial cell and gene therapies in Japan.

“We are also in the process of building stronger relationships with the specialty pharma wholesalers in Japan, such as Medipal.”

Growth of regenerative medicine in APAC markets 

Speaking to the growth of CGT in the APAC region, Stefanovich, said there are currently over 360 regenerative medicine companies operating in the APAC region.

“That number will surely continue to grow. Cryoport currently has facilities in Japan, Australia, China, South Korea, Singapore, and the Philippines. We expect our footprint will expand as the number of clinical trials continues to grow and as more of the clinical trials that we support are approved throughout the region.”​ 

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