Italy: Pharma Update Steriline’s Aseptic Filling Machines Used for Covid-19 Vaccine Production
Steriline has recently delivered its first filling line to a CDMO for the production of Covid-19 vaccines. The Italian company is also working on another filling line which will soon be delivered to Sweden. Indian companies have also shown interest in two of the company’s complete lines which are expected to produce 18,000 vaccines per hour.
Como/Italy – This week, Steriline’s first complete filling line has been finally delivered to a pharmaceutical company, working as a CDMO for the American-German alliance. The pharma company will soon produce 12,000 doses of the vaccine per hour. “Luckily, in the recent weeks our German client was able to visit Steriline’s headquarters where machines were installed, and they could then check and approve them for delivery,” concludes Fumagalli.
Last summer, Steriline received an order from the CDMO for a complete filling line worth 4.3 million dollars (3.6 million euros). “In August, they contacted us looking for a complete production line which had to be available in a very short time to produce a Covid-19 vaccine. In Europe only 8 companies could have done this, and the client’s choice fell on us,” says Federico Fumagalli, Chief Commercial Officer at Steriline.
To satisfy the request, no Christmas break was given at Steriline, but rather double work shifts were needed with new personnel added and another increment of 10 % to the personnel was planned in the coming months.
“We had to engage external workers to support our internal experts and we fulfilled the requirements of the project in only five months,” continues Fumagalli. “When I saw the line assembled and ready for the last acceptance test, I was stunned of the very short time we spent for its engineering and development”.
To squeeze the standard lead times for approvals, Steriline also leveraged the use of cameras and other live streaming tools to allow customers’ acceptance tests (FAT) to be completed remotely overpassing the current travelling difficulties and restrictions.
Another filling line for vaccines is already under construction and it will soon reach Sweden. This will have a production capacity compared to the one described before. Furthermore, Indian partners too came forward to ensure themselves two of Steriline’s high-tech and tailor-made complete lines, producing 18,000 vaccines per hour to be delivered to Asia and Africa.
Recently, the company also received other orders for vaccine production from Johnson & Johnson and Astra Zeneca suppliers. Steriline’s management team is now forecasting a revenue of 53 million dollars (44 million euros) for the fiscal year 2021, almost doubling the previous result.