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ABF Pharmaceutical Services classified as "critical infrastructure" by the Federal Chancellery

Press release

Security of supply during the coronavirus crisis: ABF Pharmaceutical Services classified as "critical infrastructure" by the Federal Chancellery

"The classification of our company as a ‘critical infrastructure’ is very important for our business partners in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry as well as for patients and doctors, especially during the current coronavirus crisis. This is because the classification ensures that our operations can continue even in the event of a complete shutdown of the economy and that we thus would be able to continue to fulfill our mandate to supply drugs critical to human health,"* said Dr Elisabeth Lackner, Chief Executive Officer of ABF Pharmaceutical Services and GBA Group Pharma.

ABF is a leading international full-service provider for the import, export and manufacture of drugs for clinical trials. The company is a wholly owned subsidiary of the GBA Group and part of the GBA Group Pharma Division, one of Europe's largest and most experienced service groups in the pharmaceutical and biotech sectors.

ABF is currently overseeing 104 ongoing clinical studies, which are fully active despite the current crisis. "I would like to warmly thank our employees who, even in this difficult situation, continue to apply their know-how and expertise day after day to ensure the development, testing and storage of urgently needed drugs for patients throughout Europe and the world," said Dr. Lackner

Vienna/Hamburg, 6 April 2020 - Infrastructures can be threatened by natural disasters, technical accidents, human error, cybersecurity threats, crime and terrorism. The protection of so-called "critical infrastructures" is also very important in the event of pandemics, as is currently the case with the coronavirus.

What is "critical infrastructure"

For the purposes of EU Directive 2008/114/EC, a "critical infrastructure" is an asset, system or part thereof that is essential for the maintenance of vital societal functions, health, safety, security and economic or social well-being of the population, and the disruption or destruction of which would have a significant impact as a result of the failure to maintain those functions. In 2014, the Austrian Federal Government, in consultation with the Federal Chancellery and the Federal Ministry of the Interior, adopted a master plan (APCIP) to secure the supply of food, transportation, telecommunications, energy and financial services, as well as social and health services. The APCIP is based on the critical infrastructure protection program of 2008. With the outbreak of the coronavirus, ABF has now been included as part of the country's critical infrastructure.

ABF /GBA Group Pharma – entire pharmaceutical life cycle

In conjunction with GBA Group Pharma, ABF supports its clients along the entire pharmaceutical value chain, from preclinical development to drug release. The pharmaceutical service provider's core expertise is clinical trial project management, as well as import/export, labelling, packaging, storage, special release and logistics of clinical trial samples. ABF’s expertise covers chemically and biologically produced drugs and cell-based therapies (ATMPs - Advanced Therapeutic Medical Products). GBA Group Pharma also provides central clinical laboratory, analytical test laboratory and preclinical CRO services. ABF, which increased its capacity 2.5-fold last year, also acts as an importer and distribution warehouse.

About ABF Pharmaceutical Services GmbH:

ABF Pharmaceutical Services GmbH (part of GBA Group Pharma) is a Viennese company founded in 2004, specializing in all aspects of international clinical trials, including project management, manufacturing, logistics and EU approval of investigational medicinal products, as well as import, storage and logistics for approved pharmaceuticals. ABF has a total area of 2,750 square metres (production and warehouse 1,580 m2 and office 1,170m2). State-of-the-art processing facilities offer 1,089 pallet spaces (948 spaces at room temperature/ 141 for cold storage), 5 packaging rooms (primary packaging/ secondary packaging/ cold chain) and a GMP warehouse for investigational medicinal products and commercial goods. In 2016, ABF became a member of GBA Group Pharma, one of Europe's largest and most experienced service groups in the pharmaceutical and biotech sector. With its preclinical services, analytical test laboratories and international central laboratory, the company generates annual sales of around 50 million euros.

About GBA Group Pharma:

GBA Group Pharma, headquartered in Hamburg, Germany, is one of the largest and most experienced service providers in the European pharmaceutical and biotechnology sector. As a unique "one-stop solution," the company supports the entire process of drug development and commercialization, from preclinical to clinical services, including analytical services, clinical trial goods supply, central laboratory services, QP services and support for approval processes, as well as the import/export of approved products. GBA Group Pharma can meet all Brexit-related service requirements that pharmaceutical and biotech companies with business operations in the EU may have. GBA Group Pharma employs approximately 500 people in Austria, Germany and the UK and is part of GBA Group, Hamburg. For more information, please visit and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

ABF Pharmaceutical Services / GBA Group Pharma

Natalie Eiffe-Kuhn

Mobile: +43 676 897115513


MC Services AG

Julia Hofmann

Phone: +49 89 210 228 0


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