Samsung Biologics, one of the world’s largest contract development and manufacturing organizations, announced its earnings for the final quarter of 2023, noting that it surpassed 1 trillion South Korean won (roughly $749 million), a first since the CDMO’s inception. Known for its end-to-end biopharmaceutical services, Samsung Biologics also expanded its manufacturing capacity in 2023, announced several portfolio diversification strategies, and committed to sustainability and innovation in biopharmaceutical development.

“We have achieved another remarkable milestone with our consolidated operating profit surpassing 1 trillion won in the 12 years since our founding in 2011. Our unwavering commitment to customer-centric services and continuous innovation remains at the core of our mission, ensuring the delivery of high-quality biomedicines to patients worldwide,” said John Rim, president and CEO of Samsung Biologics. 

“Despite the challenging environment, we remain optimistic, anticipating continued growth driven by sustained partnerships, expanded capacity, and strategic portfolio diversification in the coming year.” 

Financial Highlights and Operational Excellence

Samsung Biologics reported significant increases in several key financial metrics for the fiscal year 2023. The company’s consolidated revenue reached 3.69 trillion won, up 23.1% from the previous year. The fourth quarter alone saw revenue of 1.07 trillion won and an operating profit of 350 billion won, which the CDMO attributed to the ramp-up of operations at its new Plant 4 facility, as well as a robust sales backlog​​​​.

Full operation of Plant 4 commenced in June. The plant, which provides an additional 240,000 liters of capacity, is expected to gradually bolster the company’s revenue. Samsung Biologics anticipates it will account for approximately 30% of the company’s drug substance manufacturing business revenue by 2025. The CDMO also broke ground on Plant 5 in 2024. The first facility of its second Bio Campus, the plant is five months ahead of the initial construction timeline. Upon completion in April 2025, Plant 5 will boost Samsung Biologics’ biomanufacturing capabilities to 784,000 liters. By the year 2032, Bio Campus II will encompass four facilities, each boasting a 180,000-liter capacity. Together with Bio Campus I, this expansion will bring the company’s total capacity to more than 1.3 million liters. 

Samsung Biologics fortified its industry presence in 2023 through active participation in global conferences and exhibitions, including BIO International and the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference, showcasing its services and engaging with potential clients. This engagement strategy has paid off, with Samsung Biologics expanding manufacturing contracts with major pharmaceutical companies like Pfizer and Bristol Myers Squibb, highlighting its stature as a trusted partner in the biopharmaceutical industry.

To cater to the diverse needs of its clients, Samsung Biologics introduced customized chemistry, manufacturing, and controls solutions and launched new development platforms in 2023. S-CHOsient™ and S-Glyn™ aim to address common challenges in the development and production of biologics, such as improving cell line productivity, antibody quality, and process efficiency. 

The company’s investment in an antibody-drug conjugate manufacturing facility, set to be current good manufacturing practices-ready within 2024, further underscores its commitment to pioneering next-generation biomedicines​​​​. In addition to constructing its own ADC facility, Samsung Biologics invested in ADC-focused biotechnology firms AimedBio and Araris Biotech AG through the Samsung Life Science Fund.

Sustainability and Global Recognition

Samsung Biologics has also been active in environmental, social, and governance practices. The company was awarded the EcoVadis’ Platinum Sustainability Rating for its sustainable management practices. Additionally, Samsung Biologics became the first CDMO to receive the Sustainable Markets Initiative’s Terra Carta Seal, which recognizes leaders in aligning economic activities with the goals of environmental sustainability.

As the exclusive CDMO member of the SMI Health Systems Taskforce, Samsung Biologics is at the forefront of initiatives to reduce carbon footprints across health care supply chains, leading the adoption of renewable energy and eco-friendly transportation solutions with its suppliers.

The CDMO has charted a course toward achieving carbon neutrality by 2050 or sooner. It has detailed goals of a 32% reduction in direct emissions by 2030, 62% by 2040, and a 36% cut in supplier emissions by 2030, escalating to 73% by 2040. Integral to this comprehensive strategy are commitments to renewable energy, notably the company’s pledge to the RE100 initiative, which requires the use of 100% renewable electricity.

Outlook for the Future

With a strong financial base, strategic expansions, and a focus on innovation and sustainability, Samsung Biologics is poised for continued growth. The company’s efforts to diversify its service offerings and commitment to sustainable practices align with the broader trends in the biopharmaceutical industry, positioning Samsung Biologics as a leader in the CDMO sector​​​​.

Through its strategic investments, Samsung Biologics not only aims to meet the current demands of the biopharmaceutical industry but also to anticipate and shape future trends. The company’s achievements in 2023, highlighted by financial growth, operational expansions, and industry recognition, underscore its role as a pivotal player in the global biopharmaceutical ecosystem, with a promising outlook for continued success and innovation in the years to come.

By Manali