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Ashfield Commercial & Medical Services Redefines Healthcare Outsourcing to Meet Pharma's Challenges

LONDON, February 3, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --

UDG Healthcare plc (formerly United Drug plc), a leading international provider of services to healthcare manufacturers and pharmacies, has integrated its sales, marketing and medical service offerings within one division to better meet the needs of pharmaceutical clients. In addition to delivering its global services more effectively, this meets the industry demand for greater flexibility, insight and innovation from service providers. The new division, Ashfield Commercial and Medical Services, combines eight service areas under the Ashfield division umbrella, allowing the newly created cross-functional business approach to enhance future client engagements.

The global healthcare environment is increasingly complex and characterised by: an increase in specialty products; greater regulatory control; reimbursement difficulties; healthcare professional access challenges; better informed patients; increased use of technology and media influence and continued pressure on pharmaceutical companies to demonstrate real world patient benefits to justify treatment costs. Ashfield, as a leading international outsourced service provider for the pharmaceutical industry, is responding to these needs by utilising a partnership approach to bring greater insight, more flexibility and ingenuity to its services for global clients.

Bringing together highly successful individual business brands including Ashfield In2Focus, Business Edge, Pharmexx, InforMed, Watermeadow Medical, Pharma Marketing Academy and Universal WorldEvents under the Ashfield brand provides even more value to clients through a cross-functional business approach. This enables Ashfield to develop solutions that harness excellence across their areas of expertise and work in partnership with clients to ensure impact, effectiveness and efficiency.

Ashfield's eight areas of expertise are:

  • Ashfield Commercial;
  • Ashfield Clinical;
  • Ashfield Healthcare Communications;
  • Ashfield Insight and Performance;
  • Ashfield Market Access;
  • Ashfield Meetings and Events;
  • Ashfield Pharmacovigilance;
  • Ashfield Medical Information.

The Ashfield portfolio provides solutions throughout the product lifecycle:  in the pre-launch phase services include managing investigator meetings and developing scientific communications, through to organising advisory boards and conducting the market research required to develop brand strategy. Once products are approved, Ashfield provides marketing consultancy, designs and organises launch conferences and implements sales force effectiveness programmes to ensure launch success then delivers sales solutions via Ashfield's multi-channel field and call centre services. In addition Ashfield provides the clinical education, patient support programmes and medical information services to ensure patients and healthcare professionals receive the information and support they need.

Chris Corbin, Managing Director of Ashfield Commercial & Medical Services commented:

"This transformation of our business allows us to deliver more for the industry, healthcare professionals and patients through our combined expertise and insight, whilst retaining the ingenuity and energy that our companies are known for. We have always put our clients and customers first and uniting these businesses in one division will help us address their challenges even more effectively."  

Partnering with Ashfield, an international outsourcing organisation that offers breadth and depth of experience across many areas of expertise, allows organisations to work together in an honest and open way to identify the challenges and work through potential solutions. Through an integration of services and a collaborative culture, Ashfield Commercial and Medical Services is able to harness excellence across its areas of expertise, creating a synergy that delivers more than the sum of the parts, to accelerate their clients' success.

For further information about Ashfield Commercial & Medical Services, please visit the division's new website:

Resources available:

  • Spokespeople:
    • Chris Corbin, Managing Director, Ashfield Commercial & Medical Services & UDG Healthcare Board Director
    • Julian Thompkins, Regional President Europe, Ashfield Commercial & Medical Services
    • Gareth Davies, Divisional Marketing Director, Ashfield Commercial & Medical Services
    • Nicola Burns, CEO, Ashfield Meetings & Events


About Ashfield Commercial and Medical Services

  • Ashfield Commercial & Medical Services has acquired 16 companies over the last 14 years and delivers local and international expertise in 22 countries worldwide.

  • The culture that underpins the Ashfield Division and UDG Healthcare is built around five core values: Quality; Partnerships; Ingenuity; Expertise and Energy, and Ashfield's ambition is to grow and expand its business internationally by sustaining the ethos and drive that distinguishes the Company in every location in which it exists.

Ashfield's eight areas of expertise are:

  • Ashfield Commercial

A specialist strategic commercial team that listens, understands and provides international specialist expertise to find comprehensive sales & marketing solutions, then implements with speed, ingenuity and energy to deliver exceptional results.

  • Ashfield Clinical

Ashfield Clinical designs and delivers solutions focused on improving patient clinical outcomes. It prides itself on adding value and creating tailored clinical solutions to meet the needs of patients, healthcare providers and pharmaceutical companies.

  • Ashfield Healthcare Communications

A global healthcare communications business with strong therapeutic experience that turns science into meaningful communications to support informed clinical decision-making.

  • Ashfield Insight and Performance

Ashfield Insight & Performance delivers services to support the industry from early-stage insight gathering, through business analytics and research, to assessing and delivering excellence in sales, marketing and leadership solutions.

  • Ashfield Market Access

Offering comprehensive, experienced consulting and account management to support strong formulary positioning.  

  • Ashfield Medical Information

Our highly regarded medical information services provide compliant and accurate information to patients and healthcare professionals for pharmaceutical, biotech and medical device clients.

  • Ashfield Meetings & Events

A full service global event management company specialising in serving the healthcare sector and delivering seamless local service from conferences and investigator meetings to incentive programmes, advisory boards and award ceremonies.

  • Ashfield Pharmacovigilance

Partnering globally with pharmaceutical companies, biotech and animal health organisations, Ashfield Pharmacovigilance delivers outstanding pharmacovigilance expertise and risk management services.

About UDG Healthcare plc

Listed on the London Stock Exchange, UDG Healthcare plc is a leading international provider of services to healthcare manufacturers and pharmaceutical retailers, with operations in 22 countries including the US, UK, Ireland, Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium.

Following the companies rebrand to UDG Healthcare plc in October 2013 the Group now operates across four key areas: Aquilant Specialist Healthcare Services, Ashfield Commercial and Medical Services, United Drug Supply Chain Services and Sharp Packaging Services.

Aquilant Specialist Healthcare Services is a leading provider of specialist healthcare and scientific products and services, providing out-sourced sales, marketing, distribution and engineering for the medical and scientific sectors. The financial results for Aquilant are reported under United Drug Supply Chain Services.

Ashfield Commercial and Medical Services is a global leader in the provision of contract sales outsourcing services to pharmaceutical manufacturers with operations in major markets including Continental Europe, the UK, North America and a presence in South America and Asia. Ashfield provides sales teams, tele-sales, market research, business intelligence, market access, nurse educators, medical information, pharmacovigilance, medical communications and event management to healthcare companies in 22 countries. It focuses on supporting healthcare professionals and patients at all stages of the product life cycle.

Sharp Packaging Services is a leading international provider of pharmaceutical contract packaging and clinical trials materials services with facilities in the US, UK, Dutch and Belgian markets.

United Drug Supply Chain Services is the largest pharmaceutical wholesaler in Ireland. It is also the market leader in contract distribution outsourcing (pre-wholesaling) in Ireland and has achieved the No. 1 position in the UK through its joint venture business UniDrug Distribution Group. United Drug Supply Chain Services provides logistics services to healthcare companies, pharmacies and hospitals in the UK and Ireland.  

For more information visit: and

For enquiries:
Gareth Davies, Divisional Marketing Director
Ashfield Commercial & Medical Services
Tel: +1-215-688-1975

Clare Lucker, Director
Tel: +44(0)7979-694931

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