Thermography inspection co DIR raises $10m

pharmaceuticals

Pfizer has invested in the Israeli company, which has developed products that use thermal patterns to test sealing of pharmaceutical products.

DIR Technologies, which is developing quality control devices for the pharmaceutical industry, will receive a $10 million investment from pharmaceutical giant Pfizer under a strategic cooperation agreement.

DIR's products inform users whether a small bottle or package of drugs is properly sealed when it leaves the factory. The usual method of checking this is to sample several bottles or packages and manually examine the effectiveness of their sealing. Scanning a sample, however, does not detect all defective products. A means of scanning without human contact for each and every item is therefore needed.

Company entrepreneurs Eran Sinbar and Yoav Weinstein have experience in infrared vision, which has been greatly developed in Israel in recent years due to its military and security applications. This field is now being converted for industry for the purpose of detecting defects in various products. DIR is among the pioneers in applying this idea to pharmaceutical assembly lines.

Other DIR products also detect the quantity of active ingredient in the product and various features of its quality without damaging the bottle's seal. The company was founded as a spinoff of SCD, which uses the same technological principles for quality control in the semiconductors sector. The shareholders in SCD include Elbit Systems Ltd. (Nasdaq: ESLT; TASE: ESLT) and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd., which are therefore also shareholders in DIR, together with medical investment fund SCP Vitalife.

Last April, DIR signed a five-year agreement with Pfizer to apply its method to several of Pfizer's production lines. It appears that the pilot was a success, leading to the current investment.

Founded in 2009, DIR launched its products in 2013. In the future, it hopes to apply its technology to testing non-pharmaceutical products that require complete sealing, such as food and toiletries.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on December 27, 2016

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2016

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