Pharmaceutical Product Development

Pharmaceutical Product Development, LLC.
Industry Contract research organizations
Founded 1985
Headquarters Wilmington, North Carolina, United States
Key people
See Principal Officers page of the PPD Website[1]
Products Contract clinical research for pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical device, academic and government organizations; services include discovery, development, lifecycle management and laboratory services.
Number of employees
16,000 (2016)

Pharmaceutical Product Development, LLC (PPD) is a global contract research organization (CRO) providing discovery, development and post-approval services as well as compound partnering programs. The company’s clients and partners include pharmaceutical, biotechnology, medical device, academic and government organizations. PPD is mainly known for conducting drug development for its clients, it also invests in developing new products through its compound partnering program.


PPD was founded by Fred Eshelman, Pharm.D., as a one-person consulting firm in 1985. The following year he expanded the company's scope to include development services and relocated operations from Maryland to North Carolina.


PPD maintains its worldwide headquarters in Wilmington, N.C. The company has more than 16,000 employees and offices in 46 countries.


PPD provides drug discovery, development, lifecycle management and laboratory services. PPD has a 300-bed healthy volunteer (Phase I) clinic and a dental research clinic in Austin, Texas.

Clinical Development Services

PPD provides product development and post-approval services for biopharmaceuticals and devices, as well as full service Phase II-IIIb clinical studies for multinational regulatory submissions. PPD also offers clinical data management and information solutions, including consulting and proprietary software tools to speed collection, analysis and reporting of clinical trial data.

Laboratory Services

PPD provides bioanalytical, cGMP product analysis, central laboratory, and vaccines and biologics lab services.

Discovery Sciences/Compound Partnering

The discovery sciences segment offers biomarker discovery services, nonclinical development and preclinical services. Through its compound partnering program, it also seeks to in-license early-stage compounds, take them through proof of concept, and out-license them to its partners for late clinical testing and commercialization. PPD shares in the risks and rewards of bringing a drug to market, gaining revenues generated by licensing fees, milestone payments and commercial royalties.

The company’s post-approval services include epidemiology, risk management and outcomes research; late-stage trials; medical information; product safety; registries and observational studies.


  1. "Principal Officers". Retrieved 2 March 2015.
  2. William Faulkner (May 20, 2011). "David Grange retires as CEO of PPD". Wilmington StarNews.
  3. Peter Lattman (October 3, 2011). "Buyout Firms to Buy Drug Research Company for $3.9 Billion". New York Times.
  4. William Faulkner (May 23, 2012). "PPD names new CEO". Wilmington StarNews.
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