Outsourcer QPharma buys a sound-alike firm to help clients target key docs

QPharma, which makes its money handling launches for drugmakers, is investing in analytics, buying an unrelated company called Qforma to better target key physicians.

Under the deal, QPharma is picking up a specialist in crunching data on prescription decisions, conference attendance and industry influence, acquiring technology it believes will help it identify key opinion leaders in the medical field. With that information, QPharma hopes to improve product rollouts for its clients and boost sales of drugs and devices already on the market by reaching the right doctors with the right information.

QPharma began as a provider of process validation software for manufacturers in life sciences, and the company has since grown to provide commercial services. The Qforma buyout is designed to bolster the latter business, bringing in analytics technology with the goal of better standing out in the market for outsourced product launch services, the company said.

"The purchase of Qforma is a natural progression of the incremental growth strategy that has served QPharma well in the past two decades," QPharma CEO Patrick Den Boer said in a statement. "The outstanding technology platform and solution base they have built is a perfect complement to QPharma's suite of business intelligence tools."

To avoid confusion, QPharma is doing away with the Qforma brand, folding the company into its existing commercial operation. Once the deal closes, QPharma's payroll will increase by 10%, the company said.

Neither company disclosed financial details.

- read the statement