Outlook for drug firm is healthy after cash savings

VISIT Jon Tucker (left) from Pfizer with MP David Willetts in the new cold store at the New Road site. (120841-443)
VISIT Jon Tucker (left) from Pfizer with MP David Willetts in the new cold store at the New Road site. (120841-443)
Picture: Malcolm Wells

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PHARMACEUTICAL giant Pfizer has saved more than £1.5m in efficiencies at its Havant base.

It has been working with global business improvement specialist Oliver Wight, which has seen it double its output and streamline its operations.

Pfizer Havant packs and distributes medicines that immunise children against pneumococcal disease and also treat severe rheumatoid arthritis.

The firm’s warehouse and logistics operations manager, Stewart Prince, said: ‘We are now processing twice as many pallets and shipments, and completing more than double the number of transactions as before – yet it doesn’t feel twice as difficult.’

And Jon Sinnott, who is the supply chain solutions lead for Pfizer at Havant, added: ‘We’ve doubled vaccine output while still running the same shift pattern.

‘We plan better and have removed waiting time from the schedule.’

Around 2.7 million people in Britain and 40 million people around the world take Pfizer medicines every day.

The site at Havant, which employs 320 staff, began working with Oliver Wight after seeing the success of a similar efficiency programme at Pfizer’s site in Freiberg, Germany.

And the firm says its staff are proud of how the company is improving.

Ian Morris, planning and customer relations manager, said: ‘When we started out levels of performance were as low as 5 per cent.

‘We’re now consistently above 95 per cent.

‘The first 100 per cent was beautiful – people were really proud.’

As reported in The News, earlier this year a new £7m cold storage facility was opened, taking investment in the New Lane site to £49m since Pfizer took it over from Wyeth in 2009.

The changes mean the Havant cold storage facility is now the largest of its kind in Europe, and it holds £250m worth of stock.

The drugs are sent to 122 destinations around the world from Havant.