Oncology Services Europe (OSE), a specialist contract research organisation (CRO) based in Munich, Germany, has entered the Indian market by establishing an independent company, Oncology Services India (OSI), in Ahmedabad, Gujarat state.

OSI will offer a full range of clinical development services from Phase I first-in-human trials to Phase IV post-marketing studies. Citing the availability of large numbers of treatment-naïve patients in India as well as the country’s up-to-date technological infrastructure, hospital network and “highly qualified and experienced” clinical investigators, Dr Vimal Sanghavi, chief executive officer (CEO) of OSI, said Oncology Services is “looking to replicate the success of its European experience” of multicentre global trials in the Indian subcontinent.

OSE and OSI have complementary strengths and will accumulate expertise from synergies in the technical aspects of clinical research, he noted, adding: “With assignments underway and initial plans to offer services to offshore clients, apart from Indian clients, OSI is all set to establish a new benchmark for the Indian clinical research industry”.

The Indian market for clinical trials is worth US$300 million and is expected to grow at an annual rate of 15% over the next four years, OSE pointed out. According to research data and market studies, this will bring nearly 15% of all global clinical trials to India by 2011, generating annual revenues of US$1 billion.

“By extending its presence in India, OSE can reap definite benefits of faster recruitment for quality data and cost-effective clinical services for its global clients,” commented OSE’s CEO, Dr Wolfgang Beier. “Clinical services are now a global opportunity for India, with a strong competitive edge based on speed and quality of clinical development.”

Expanding its capacity to serve the needs of both multinational and local pharmaceutical companies will enable OSE to offer “a higher level of project management, quality and expertise to facilitate clinical trials”, Beier added. “OSI will have unlimited access to the expertise and technology assistance of our European operations. Our experience of dealing with international clients with diversified needs in terms of clinical services will be an asset to our Indian operations.”