By recognising that our infrastructure must always be appropriate to solving the problem at hand, we have taken a novel approach to our supply of medicines in the fragmented market of Europe. The EU is the world´s biggest trading block encompassing over 550 million people, 27 countries and over 20% of world´s GDP. Whilst each market is very different over the last decade the regulatory procedures required to gain approval to sell pharmaceuticals in the region have been harmonised.

The typical supply lead time from API order to provision of final goods can take over 6 months. Given the many supply shortages that currently exist in the region it is common for demand to fluctuate on a regular basis. It is difficult to adapt to this using a ´make to order´ supply scheme. Instead using a dedicated facility at Haverhill, Cambridgeshire, UK, Accord employs a state of the art ´pack to order´ or postponement strategy.

Put simply we produce large batches of common pharmaceutical product at our EMA and FDA approved facilities and then transfer as nude or undifferentiated products to the packing site. This bulk product is then held ready to pack upon requirement able to go to any of the 27 markets.

By employing this scheme we can shorten lead-times to a matter of weeks. This use of infrastructure is far more suitable to the volatile demand environment of the European trading block than conventional supply chains, all part of our i-4 concept.