PAREXEL International excels in pharmaceutical development services. A top contract research organization (CRO), the firm counts among its clients some of the world's largest drug, biotech, and medical device firms. Its Clinical Research Services segment provides clinical trial and data management, study design, patient recruitment, biostatistical analysis, clinical pharmacology, and industry training and publishing. PAREXEL Consulting and Medical Communications Services handles the non-clinical aspects of drug development, regulatory affairs, and new product launches. Its Perceptive Informatics unit offers information technology systems and services that help manage clinical trials.
The company has some 70 facilities in more than 50 countries in Europe, the Asia/Pacific region, North America, South America, and Africa. More than half of its sales are generated outside the US, partly because of its core client base of large multinational corporations. PAREXEL's sales force directs custom marketing efforts towards niche market segments to match the appropriate services with each customer's needs. Its overall goal is to help clients reduce costs and risks related to product development and commercialization.
The company's largest segment, Clinical Research Services (CRS), accounts for two-thirds of sales. Its core development business covers all phases of drug and device development from discovery research through clinical trials and post-marketing studies. The division has benefited from the market trend of increased R&D outsourcing by pharmaceutical and biotech drug companies. The company seeks to widen its service offerings, geographic presence, and client base both through internal initiatives and via acquisitions. In late 2012 it purchased Liquent for about $72 million, which added regulatory software and technology.
The firm has also built up its other divisions to lessen the blow it might suffer if it were to lose a big CRS client. In 2008 PAREXEL paid $190 million for UK firm ClinPhone to boost its clinical information technology offerings. ClinPhone's trial management technologies, including phone and Internet response systems, were then integrated into Perceptive Informatics.
While the company's revenues have grown steadily over time, in 2011 its cash flow dropped sharply due to the expense of implementing a new accounting and billing system. That same year the company launched a restructuring of its Early Phase clinical development services within CRS to improve efficiencies. However, that move also added to the dip in the company's cash flow. – less