CDMO capacity does not equal capability, says VintaBio

Fresh from emerging from stealth, VintaBio says the biggest trend by far in the CDMO space is excess capacity.

Millie Nelson, Editor

July 20, 2023

4 Min Read
CDMO capacity does not equal capability, says VintaBio
David Radspinner, CEO of VintaBio.

Fresh from emerging from stealth, VintaBio says the biggest trend in the CDMO space is excess capacity.

VintaBio is a recently launched cell and gene therapy (CGT) contract development manufacturing organization (CDMO), which received $64 million in funding in April to support the opening of its CGT facility in Philadelphia, US.


David Radspinner, CEO of VintaBio.

2023 has seen multiple CDMO’s enter the Life Science space. Last month, the Public Investment Fund (PIF) has launched Lifera, a commercial-scale CDMO to grow Saudi Arabia’s local biopharmaceutical industry. In May, eXmoor pharma completed a $35 million Series A financing round to move the company into a full-service CGT CDMO.

And just a couple of weeks before this, NewBiologix entered the CDMO scene armed with $50 million in funding to develop a CGT platform.  

As the CDMO landscape grows and changes, BioProcess Insider spoke to David Radspinner, CEO of VintaBio, to find out the latest trends identified in the space and what they are focusing on to maintain their position.

David Radspinner (DR): When I talk about CDMOs it is very much [geared] towards CGT therapies. What we saw a couple years ago was a lot of demand without capacity, [which led to a] tremendous amount of investment in facilities infrastructure.

BI: Have you noticed any variations with specific modalities?

DR: There are subtle variations in modalities, facilities, and in some geographics what we are seeing is excess capacity and/or temporary excess capacity, which is by far the biggest trend. The other trend is capacity doesn’t equal capability.

BI: What do you mean by that?                

DR: There is a wide variety of experience in CGT and wide capabilities. What I am hearing from innovators and CDMOs is there are mixed results on projects, and they are not always successful. This has an effect on the insource vs outsource [debate].

BI: How do you think the CDMO space can resolve this issue?

DR: [With] talent. Some of the modalities are trying to resolve this by having processes that are similar. [For example] creating a process that is similar to say monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) so they can use the same skill set. You need that experience, they have people that are talented, but they don’t have the years and years of experience [required].

BI: What does this outsource vs insource challenge mean for the biopharma space and in particular, the start-up firms?

DR: Its complex because it’s confounded with the funding challenges across the markets, including the regulatory requirements for CGTs. If you’re a start-up innovator you need outsourcing because you need help and may not have GMP capability.

This makes the decision harder; they will have more people knocking on their door and [have to] filter through a lot more choices. There are challenges with funding and more stress on getting it right the first time. If you’re funded to take a therapy to market, [the investor] might be less forgiving on getting it wrong.

BI: As a small CDMO yourself, what does this mean for VintaBio?

DR:  What it means for us, and companies like mine, is that we have to focus on what we’re good at and not cater for everyone. [We want to] focus on what we’re good at and really be great at it.

BI: Are there any business challenges that surround this decision?

DR: It’s a tough call from a pure business point of view as you want to do as many things as you can with that infrastructure. However, for the point of talent, resources, and people, you can’t build if you can’t find the talent.

BI: What strategy is VintaBio adopting to reach this aim?

DR:  Our speciality is gene therapies today. We are look[ing] at the development and manufacturing and constantly looking at how we can improve productivity. [For example] focusing on technology and advancements etc. By being on the edge of new technologies, rather than expanding across modalities, we are improving what we are doing. We are trying to stay lean and trying to avoid hiring more people than we need.

About the Author(s)

Millie Nelson

Editor, BioProcess Insider

Journalist covering global biopharmaceutical manufacturing and processing news and host of the Voices of Biotech podcast.

I am currently living and working in London but I grew up in Lincolnshire (UK) and studied in Newcastle (UK).

Got a story? Feel free to email me at [email protected]

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