New CPHI philosophy is ‘At the heart of Pharma’

As anyone who attended either CPHI North America or Pharmapack can attest, the CPHI event series has undergone – and is still undergoing – a major brand realignment. 

This means that over the next six-months, Informa will introduce new brand architecture to better reflect its position in the pharma industry. Changes will encompass the wide range of CPHI’s products and services, with an emphasis on what the organisation represents. All of this exciting new activity culminates at CPHI’s flagship event – taking place this year at the Messe Frankfurt from 1-3 November, with the event being renamed CPHI Frankfurt.

Ahead of these new developments for pharma’s largest event, we spoke with Natasha Jennings (NJ), Head of Marketing for the Pharma Portfolio at Informa, on the thinking behind the new architecture and what this means in practical terms for attendees of CPHI events and the wider pharma industry.

Jennings explained that a significant part of the changes are to reflect how the event has evolved and grown over time – not least in the last two years, a time in which it has introduced many new offerings. In fact, since launching its pharma events over three decades ago, CPHI has grown to become the world’s only end-to-end pharma community.

Demand for outsourcing has, of course, also increased throughout the pandemic and CPHI has seen the industry respond very positively to its new content platforms, a full-service marketplace and marketing services. Consequently, Informa recognised it was the ideal moment to evaluate how it needs to position CPHI services to pharma and what the brand represents to the industry moving forwards.

CKH: Why now for this change?

NJ: Being the go-to brand for the pharma industry, we have bared witness first-hand to how the pandemic has accelerated many of the changes already under way within the industry and we have been evolving our platforms to meet and facilitate these changes. For example, there was a significant switch towards working from home and digital meetings and this is particularly true among those driving new business within pharma. Consequently, both our visitors and exhibitors were revaluating the way they source new contacts, with a year-round approach sought to complement the vital in-person meetings at major events. In response, we introduced a raft of new offerings and undertook something of a digital content blitz, with new podcasts, videos, trend reports and white papers. The aim is to establish a digital offering that provides our partners with the industry engagement they lacked in face-to-face networking. However, now that, hopefully, the worst of the pandemic is over, we have realised this now forms an integral part of the way our attendees will interact with our events in the future. It’s helped the industry evolve towards a more targeted and effective form of sourcing contacts and partners. We think it’s a very exciting time, particularly as the industry is expanding so quickly and demand for supply side partners increasing.

CKH: How would you describe the new brand restructure?

NJ: One of the challenges we had, is that as the brand has grown over a period of some 30 years and we made incremental additions to the services we offer, the old brand architecture did not best reflect everything we are today. It did not tell the compelling story of what CPHI facilitates for the industry.

For example, CPHI Frankfurt (formerly CPHI Worldwide) covers many verticals, each with their own sub-brand. With the new brand architecture, we have eliminated these sub- brands and instead we use functional descriptors to cater to a specific industry vertical. So the ICSE and Innopack brands will be retired, but we will still have dedicated areas in our online and onsite events for outsourcing and packaging. Only Pharmapack and P-MEC will retain their status in the new hierarchy, but they will be recognised in the same family as CPHI.

CKH: Why the strapline ‘At the heart of Pharma’?

NJ: It’s really a culmination of the research we did with our external stakeholders, clients and speakers. What we learnt from the feedback during many in-depth interviews was that CPHI is now viewed as the leading global community for pharma professionals. We offer a platform like no other with live events and digital year-round solutions for our pharma community to tap into to do business, but also to meet existing contacts. Our global events are seen as one of the very few places where you get a large exchange of information, collaboration and partnering from across the whole pharma supply chain. We wanted the brand to be synonymous within pharma for facilitating these connections, ideas and growth. So the strapline ‘At the heart of Pharma’ felt like a perfect fit.

CKH: What’s next for pharma?

NJ: It is a really exciting time for the industry as the pandemic has shaken up how quickly the pharma industry can develop new medicines, refocussed the industry on its supply chain and, simultaneously, we have also seen new technologies established from process improvements in manufacturing to the RNA vaccines. Alongside this, outsourcing is growing extremely quickly and at CPHI we are incredibly aware of the role we play in facilitating this development.

The last year has shown that pharma advances more quickly when it has more partners and nurtures more collaborative approaches. Collectively, the industry has been able to achieve much bigger milestones and in faster timeframes, so we want to continue to facilitate this step change in approach. Underpinning all the rapid development and improved supply chain security in pharma is a wider breadth of partners, which is exactly what we are here to deliver.

Therefore, the restructuring of our brand is not simply a one-off moment, but will mark a continuous evolution to help more partners meet more quickly, so that medicines and therapies can make it to patients faster and more efficiently. Our role is to help deliver the most proactive partnerships for pharma.