Breakthrough Into Japanese Markets for Fast-Growing Scottish Life Science Company AvantiCell Science

Published: Jun 04, 2013

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June 6, 2013 -- One of Scotland's most successful life science exporting companies, AvantiCell Science, has made a significant breakthrough into Japan, one of its most important target markets.

AvantiCell, which already has a lucrative export footprint in Malaysia and China, has just signed a substantial six-figure deal to supply cells to one of the technologically-advanced country's leading pharmaceutical companies.

The door-opening contract comes as a result of a sustained and focused marketing push into Japan, which is recognised as one of the most difficult arenas for smaller companies to gain a foothold.

Dr Jo Oliver, chief executive of the Ayrshire based SME, said: "We have achieved a number of small deals in Japan before now, but this service contract for isolating and testing cells is of a different order of magnitude.

"More importantly, the contacts we have made during negotiations with the companies involved have evolved into valuable relationships and already we are in discussions about other potentially attractive projects."

The Japanese excursion is in line with AvantiCell's long-term sales development strategy, which has seen most of its activities focused on exports, initially to Europe and latterly to the booming Far Eastern markets.

The company has established a niche by isolating primary cells from human and animal tissue. The attraction to researchers and analysts worldwide is that primary cells retain a biological memory of the tissue they came from.

This means that, when grown in a culture dish, they mimic what happens in the body, and so can be used to test predictively a whole range of materials. This allows researchers to make informed decisions about the likelihood of failure or success at an early stage in the development process.

Dr Oliver, who is posting turnover of £600, 000 for the year to March 2013 and forecasting further, double-digit growth for the coming year, said that she expects continued growth for the company to come from the emerging economies.

She said: "Conducting business in countries such as Japan is quite different from in Europe and the US and it is important for Scottish companies with an eye on these markets to be aware of cultural and social, as well as commercial, sensibilities.

"We are delighted with the success we have achieved in Japan so far and we are confident that the quality and diversity of our product range will stimulate further flows of new business in the near future."

For further information about AvantiCell, contact Dr Joanna Oliver, chief executive, Gibbs Yard Building, Auchincruive, Ayr, KA6 5HW, Scotland, UK. t: +44 (0) 1292 521060. f: +44 (0) 1292 521610. m: +44 (0) 7867 977147. E: W:

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