Lonza in the 1980s became one of the first companies in the world to serve as a custom manufacturer of active pharmaceutical ingredients. This transformation was the result of a decision to harness the synergies between fine chemistry and biotechnology, which at the time was an exciting new field in medicine. To explore Lonza’s opportunities, the Visp research center set up a working group for biotechnology that initially consisted of eight members. Besides customer-oriented projects, the aim was to explore new areas of biotechnological research, setting the stage for Lonza’s future biotechnology business.
In 1982, this research project bore fruit when Lonza began the exclusive custom manufacturing of substances for both pharmaceutical and agrochemical companies.