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Accenture buys its way into regulatory services for pharma

Pharmaceuticals

New York: Accenture has positioned itself to provide full BPO regulatory services for the pharmaceutical industry, with an acquisition in the US, announced yesterday.

The firm has entered into an agreement to acquire Octagon Research Solutions, Inc., a provider of clinical and regulatory information management solutions and software for the pharmaceutical industry. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

The acquisition takes Accenture into one of the most sensitive areas of the pharmaceutical industry.

It says the acquisition will enhance its ability to help its pharmaceutical clients achieve more efficient global regulatory submissions that will enable them to get medicines to market more quickly, safely and at a lower cost. Accenture's capabilities will be expanded to include comprehensive clinical and regulatory services — from clinical data collection to regulatory submissions management.

As a result of the deal, Accenture will extend its business process outsourcing (BPO) services portfolio to target the pharmaceutical industry.

Octagon has 380 professional staff with experience in clinical data services and regulatory submissions, with 400 original applications completed, and the company is the fifth largest user of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) electronic submission gateway.

It is a recognized provider for the FDA in establishing clinical data conversion and training standards and has deep knowledge of regulatory affairs combined with well established relationships developed by partnering with regulatory authorities.

Octagon will be fully integrated into Accenture's Life Sciences industry group.

"We believe that the timing is perfect for this acquisition as our clients are increasingly under pressure to reduce the drug development and approval timelines to get products to market more quickly, safely and cost effectively," said David Boath, North American managing director for Accenture's Life Sciences industry group.

"Our clients have an urgent need to focus resources on the scientific breakthroughs and also to improve the efficiency of their clinical and regulatory operations. Octagon's capabilities and experience will enable Accenture to provide comprehensive services spanning regulatory operations, submissions management, clinical data conversion and clinical data management. The acquisition will enable Accenture to offer what we view as the industry's first comprehensive regulatory services solution with a global footprint."

According to James Walker, Octagon's chairman and CEO, "Octagon and Accenture will bring together a powerful combination of industry expertise and global capabilities that will help pharmaceutical companies achieve sustainable drug development models and get products to market more quickly and at lower cost.

"Octagon has completed tens of thousands of regulatory submissions in countries around the world. The acquisition will strengthen our longstanding commitment to the pharmaceutical industry and provide clients with a comprehensive, global regulatory service that will deliver tangible business value."

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