It’s like “a rollercoaster that never ends,” says Dave Tudor of his new day job as managing director of the Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre (MMIC).
Tudor’s departure from his long career at GlaxoSmithKlein to take over at MMIC was announced a year ago, and he continues to balance this role with leading Life Sciences Scotland. MMIC was set up to bring medicines to market more quickly and cheaply, with large drug firms working together in “pre-competitive collaboration” to improve processes for the industry.
Tudor says he is hugely encouraged by the progress so far, with ground due to be broken on the site at Inchinnan, Renfrewshire, in February next year and the build expected to be complete by early 2021. However, the operating model – to tackle ‘grand challenges’ – is up and running.
This involves collaboration between industry, academia and government, with projects defined and specified by industry consortia. “We are looking at big, disruptive tech changes and they are attracting a lot of interest. The partnership model is working well and we are already looking at the future grand challenges,” says Tudor. “If you look at it as a report card, we are up and running, people like the technology, the partners are happy and we are on schedule.” MMIC has recruited 20 staff of a planned 80, with senior leaders all in place. Tudor stresses this was “a high-quality UK recruitment process” which has delivered a “very high-calibre team”. He adds: “We are 100 per cent focused on innovation and driving change. Ultimately, it’s about providing more medicines at an affordable cost to the patient. We can also make production more sustainable for everybody.”
This article first appeared in The Scotsman’s Life Sciences 2019 magazine. A digital version can be found here.