November 15, 2007 (Vol. 27, No. 20)
This coming January, Eurofins (www.eurofins.com) will combine the genomic products and services portfolio of its bioanalytical services company, Eurofins Medigenomix (www. medigenomix.com), with that of its majority-owned oligo synthesis/sequencing company, MWG (www.mwg-biotech.com), under a single Eurofins MWG brand.
Offering a range of advanced DNA synthesis, sequencing, and molecular biology services, the new brand will bring together MWG’s core oligos/sequencing business and international sales/marketing force with Medigenomix’ extensive portfolio of genomic services, and extensive expertise in applied DNA testing for food, agrochemical, and pharma research markets.
Bruno Poddevin, Ph.D., managing director of Eurofins MWG, maintains that establishing a single Eurofins MWG brand is a strategic step that will particularly benefit customers in research and academia.
“Eurofins MWG will provide both new and existing customers in the research arena with a dedicated one-stop-shop for DNA analysis and sequencing services, and custom oligo synthesis. The two companies have highly complementary expertise. MWG already has a well-established international sales and marketing infrastructure targeting the research market. Eurofins Medigenomix is centered on innovation and product development, and has the R&D infrastructure and scientific capabilities to significantly expand the brand’s service and product portfolio over coming years, with additional capabilities in areas such as gene synthesis, mutagenesis, and genotyping services.”
Innovation for Industrial Applications
While the Eurofins MWG brand will target the research and academic markets, Eurofins provides its analytical testing services to the commercial sector through companies operating in three global divisions: food and feeds, environmental, and pharma.
Dr. Poddevin maintains these are all fields in which DNA analysis is becoming more relevant in a commercial context for applications as diverse as testing for GM organisms in foods, analyzing air, soil, and water samples for microorganisms, or genotyping patients involved in clinical trials.
“DNA testing is a field Eurofins feels will become increasingly important to the commercial food, environmental, and pharma industries, and has been a major factor in our drive to expand our expertise in this area,” he points out.
“In order to pioneer new DNA-based services for commercial applications, MWG and Medigenomix will also be exploited by Eurofins internally to develop relevant new technologies that other Eurofins companies will market to industrial customers in all three of our operating divisions.”
Genomic Service Cluster
By building a dedicated genomic-services cluster around Eurofins MWG and creating a European genome technology campus centered at the Eurofins MWG laboratory, Eurofins also aims to foster the codevelopment of DNA/RNA services to the pharmaceutical and analytical industries through collaboration between Eurofins Medigenomix and other Eurofins businesses, combined with the clinical expertise of Eurofins Optimed, the groups’ 60-bed clinical research unit.
“Our aim is to allow both research and commercial customers access to the highest quality DNA testing services for expanding applications in the food, pharma, and environmental fields.”
Medigenomix became part of the Eurofins group in 2001, and since 2005 Eurofins Medigenomix has represented the outsourcing partner of MWG for genomic services. Eurofins acquired an equity stake in MWG during 2004 and now owns some 85% of the company.
“MWG has been fairly quiet with respect to major announcements over the last couple of years, but we have taken this time to develop the best strategy for maximizing the respective expertise of both MWG and Eurofins Medigenomix,” Dr. Poddevin continued. “We believe Eurofins MWG is the perfect vehicle to promote both MWG and Eurofins Medigenomix’ current and future portfolios, and offer clients the highest quality services and products.”
Headquartered in Ebersberg, Germany, Eurofins MWG starts with E20 million in annual brand sales, 150 employees, and manufacturing laboratories in Germany, U.S., and India. Mirroring its parent, Eurofins group, the business aims to double in size every five to six years, both through organic growth and acquisitions.