DCAT Advances Its Role in the Pharmaceutical Supply Chain

October 3, 2006
Patricia Van Arnum

Patricia Van Arnum was executive editor of Pharmaceutical Technology.

Pharmaceutical Technology, Pharmaceutical Technology-10-03-2006, Volume 2006 Supplement, Issue 6

The Drug, Chemical & Associated Technologies Association (DCAT) serves as a link between sourcing and procurement professionals in the pharmaceutical industry and suppliers of pharmaceutical ingredients.

AS THE SOURCING ACTIVITIES of the pharmaceutical industry become increasingly complex and global, the value of linking sourcing and procurement professionals with their suppliers takes on greater importance. Developing mechanisms to foster those relationships is the focus of the Drug, Chemical & Associated Technologies Association (DCAT, www.dcat.org), which is moving forward with a strategy to widen its international activities, develop new industry specific discussion councils, and broaden its methods for delivering educational programs.

DCAT's specific focus is on the supply chain and the customer–supplier function and relationship. The 365-member company association consists of firms that manufacture, distribute, or provide services to the pharmaceutical, chemical, nutritional, and related industries. Its members include professionals engaged in sourcing, procurement, and supply chain management from large- and medium-sized innovator pharmaceutical companies, generic drug companies, and consumer healthcare companies. On the supply side, DCAT's membership consists of manufacturers and distributors of active pharmaceutical ingredients, intermediates, other pharmaceutical ingredients, formulation services, pharmaceutical packaging, and related services.

By including both sides of the supply and demand equation, DCAT offers an integrated approach for the pharmaceutical supply chain. "The mission of DCAT is to provide services, programs, and activities to support the business development activities of our membership," explains Margaret Timony, executive director of DCAT. "We achieve that goal by relying on those people that know the industry the best—our volunteers from member companies that serve in leadership roles. The volunteer leaders are the true backbone and provide the perfect insight into the needs of the membership."

DCAT at a glance

DCAT's leadership

DCAT's leadership consists of an executive committee, board of directors, and program management council, which is further divided into several committees.

These committees offer a specific functional or industry focus.They include educational, supply management, nutrition and health, membership, and scholarship committees as well as committees organized for DCAT's annual dinner and Western educational event.

Joseph Colleluori, head of corporate development at Lonza (Basel, Switzerland), will become DCAT's new president, effective Nov. 1, 2006.

Colleluori will be assuming the post from Lynda Doyle, director, business development, DSM Nutritional Products, Inc. (Parsippany, NJ), who will be completing her term as president in October 2006.

Expanding focus in 2007

Part of DCAT's focus in 2006, which will continue in 2007, is to expand DCAT Week, the association's flagship event. The annual event is held in mid-March in New York City and will be held Mar. 19–22 in 2007. It culminates in the annual DCAT dinner. In 2006, DCAT held the 80th installment of the dinner, which attracted more than 1800 professionals. DCAT Week also includes educational programs such as the International Business Development Forum that address issues in global pharmaceutical sourcing, the DCAT Business Perspective Program, and a program by the DCAT Human Resources Council. A new addition in 2006, this council's program examines best practices and issues in human-resource management for the pharmaceutical and fine chemicals industries. DCAT hopes to add other industry-specific discussion councils in 2007.

DCAT will be expanding its participation in international events in 2007. It will launch that effort at this year's CPhI Worldwide in Paris, France, Oct. 3–5, to include a networking luncheon for DCAT member companies .

In addition, DCAT will be enhancing its annual Strategic Sourcing Summit and Showcase in 2007. The program is held by DCAT's Supply Management Committee and the Pharma Forum and Chemical Group of the Institute of Supply Management (Tempe, AZ, www.ism.ws) and focuses on sourcing and supply chain management for the pharmaceutical and chemical industries.

In addition, DCAT will expand its scholarship and educational initiatives in 2007. The association annually awards scholarships to support the development of future professionals in the pharmaceutical, chemical, nutritional, and related fields. The association also provides grants to colleges and universities for internships and other projects in science-related areas and fosters science education at the primary school level through a grants program administered by the National Science Teachers Association.

DCAT continues history

DCAT's origins date back to 1890 when it was founded by 50 companies, which formed the Drug Trade Section of the New York Board of Trade as a means to organize the drug trade and allied branches. "As its membership grew and become more diverse, it eventually separated itself from the Board of Trade and became a separate organization," explains Timony. Known as the Drug, Chemical & Allied Trades Association for over a century, DCAT changed its name in 2003, replacing "allied trades" with "associated technologies" to reflect better the innovation and technology developments furthered by its membership.

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