Separation and Analysis Tool is Used by Innovators Ranging from Biotech to High Tech
With the full-scale commercialization of Ultraperformance Convergence Chromatography (UPC2), a very "green" technology, Waters Corp. is leading its customers into the future. The 55-year-old Massachusetts-based company, which opened its West Coast Center for Excellence for Chromatography, Mass Spectrometry, and Informatics, in Hacienda in late 2008, makes sophisticated separation and analysis tools used by some of the Bay Area's leading tech innovators, in areas as diverse as biopharmaceuticals and smart devices.
UPC2 is taking Waters' instruments to a new level. Instead of using water and alcohol-based solvents, UPC2 uses carbon dioxide to analyze compounds. This new approach has multiple advantages: it provides high speed/high resolution analysis, is much more environmental friendly, eliminates expensive procurement and disposal procedures, and relies on a more plentiful and less costly material.
Already embraced by such premier names as Amgen, Genentech, and Gilead, UPC2 represents a compelling value proposition for drug development. Its numerous other applications encompass analyzing lipids, pesticides and herbicides, chemical materials in disk drives, and the adhesives used to attach the screens on tablets and other devices.
"Our customers are at the forefront of technology innovation, and their migration to UPC2 shows that it is becoming the industry standard," states West Coast General Manager Steve McDonough. "It provides complementary chromatographic separation capability in a green format." In the clinical arena alone, McDonough reports a high level of activity associated with physician monitoring of patient medication, for example those annual blood tests to measure the effectiveness of statins or vitamin D levels. Pain management, which goes "hand-in-glove with the Gray Tsunami," the maturing global population, is another high-growth target.
McDonough notes that Hacienda's location and amenities have real meaning for the company. While the average daily employee presence at the 13,000 square foot facility hovers at around a dozen people, the Center has played host to literally thousands of internal and external customers traveling to the site for training or high-end demonstrations.
"We serve customers and employees from Colorado westward, and the high level of traffic has brought a lot of business to local merchants, from catering and restaurants to hotels rooms and entertainment venues," he says.
The same visitors also appreciate the upgrades Waters made when moving into Hacienda from its former, more industrial location. McDonough receives frequent positive feedback from customers on the Center's "larger and more upscale footprint," which is relatively easy to get to and offers an impressive presence.
The business unit has experienced growth every year since arriving in Hacienda, a strong positive considering the recession, McDonough notes. While he does not foresee a need for additional space, the company has continued to invest in capital equipment to support the facility's labs and IT and communications infrastructure.
McDonough is also heartened by the liveliness of the Britannia Business Center neighborhood. "We like where we are and anticipate being in the Hacienda Business Park for the foreseeable future," he concludes.
For more information, visit www.waters.com .
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