80 New Jobs through DE expansion

One of the UK’s biggest pharmaceutical wholesalers is creating 80 new jobs through expanding its existing operations and opening new bases across the country.

Fast growing DE Pharmaceuticals, based in Prudhoe, is set to expand its bases in the North East and Doncaster, as well as adding new sites in Manchester, Barnsley, the South East, Belfast and the Midlands. The move will take its number of distribution centres across the UK and Ireland to nine.

In its native North East, DE is investing heavily to expand and refurbish its headquarters in Prudhoe, which currently employs 75 people.

Its expansion programme will see DE add significantly to its property portfolio and will reinforce its position as being one of the leading businesses of its kind. It is the UK’s largest distributor of generic medicines, as well as being the only shortline pharmaceutical wholesaler with distribution centres across the UK, and Ireland and supplies to more than 4,500 pharmacies across the countries.

DE recently named as the highest new entry into The Journal’s esteemed Top 200 list of North East businesses also remains on track to achieve its £196m turnover target by 2016, predicting 10 to 15 per cent organic growth each year.

The business has seen a year of strong growth following its £37m management buyout in 2013, which saw DE acquired by two of its directors, Mark Gulliford and Andy Wilson. The transaction was one of the biggest and most significant deals in the North East’s healthcare sector for several years.

The MBO came after a period of continued progress for DE, during which time it grew significantly with the acquisition of Doncaster Pharmaceuticals which operates across Southern England Eurodrug in Ireland, National Generics in the Midlands, Eclipse Generics in Scotland and Crosspharma in Northern Ireland. It also recorded continued strong levels of organic growth.

Mark Gulliford, managing director of DE Pharmaceuticals, said: “Our expansion comes after another strong period for the company, and on the back of such national demand for our services comes the need to add significant extra resource to our operation, both in terms of people and floor space.

“Having worked at DE for over 20 years, myself and Andy have unrivalled knowledge of this sector, and realised the potential for the business. We are now on the way to achieving that and remain very much on track for the £196m turnover we predicted when we bought the business last year.”

DE Pharmaceuticals are being supported legally in their expansion by Newcastle law firm Sintons. The firm’s specialist nationally regarded pharmacy team, led by Partner Christopher Welch, oversaw last year’s MBO and continues to act for DE across a range of matters.

Alok Loomba, Partner in the Real Estate department at Sintons, is handling the acquisition of new properties and sites for DE Pharmaceuticals.

He said: “As well as being one of the North East’s most dynamic and fast-growing businesses, DE Pharmaceuticals has now become one of the key players in the UK pharmaceutical sector. Over a sustained period, and particularly since the MBO, it has grown significantly and continues to do so.

“Under independent ownership and with such experienced people as Mark and Andy at the helm, we have every confidence that DE will achieve its ambitious growth plans, and are very pleased to be able to support them in achieving that.”

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