Dr. Yousry Sayed Interview
Founder, President, and CEO of Quality Chemical Laboratories, Inc. (QCL).
From the WilmingtonBiz Magazine interview with Dr. Sayed.
The Wilmington area is emerging as a national hub for research, development, and testing in the pharmaceutical world.
That’s the assessment of Yousry Sayed, president and chief executive officer of Quality Chemical Laboratories, a 20-year-old company that is about to launch its third wave of expansion.
Sayed recently went over initial plans for a potential doubling of the company’s footprint at 3220 Corporate Drive in the North Chase Parkway Industrial Park in New Hanover County.
Founded with just one client, the growing enterprise now serves about 100 clients in any given month, from the top 10 to 15 pharma companies in the world to virtual firms that come to Sayed with limited funding but a big need.
Over the years, the company has diversified its offerings as a contract pharmaceutical research and testing firm. Its competencies include testing raw and finished materials, developing analytical methods for newer products and prototyping.
In its first two phases, the company added space to accommodate a variety of testing, laboratory and administrative functions, bringing its five-building footprint on the campus off Interstate 40 to about 90,000 square feet. Current employment stands at 215.
Now, working with Cothran Harris, principal of Cothran Harris Architecture, Sayed is starting work on a third phase, with preliminary plans for a two-story structure ranging from 60,000 to 80,000 square feet, perhaps more.
“We don’t want to under plan,” Harris said.
The conceptual treatment for the new building must “convey the idea of quality, convey the idea of competence,” Harris added. “First impressions are lasting impressions.”
The building will allow for “more of a vertical integration of what they’re doing,” Harris said, with products being tested, validated and manufactured at the same location before heading to market.
According to Sayed, bringing more specialized equipment and manufacturing on-site will allow his business to help clients realize newer product delivery technologies.
The new structure could “double our size as well in employment,” he said, with hopes of increasing the number of jobs to 500 within three years.
A former professor and General College director at University of North Carolina Wilmington, Sayed said his fondest goal is to not just grow the pharmaceutical industry’s stature in the area but to keep students who are interested in the sciences here, either working for him or starting their own business.
With the $5 million corporate donation that Sayed and his wife, Linda, made to the university to support the development of new pharmaceutical sciences and chemistry programs, realization of that goal may be made easier. The pledge, made last year, was the largest corporate donor gift in the school’s history.