Life Sciences Wins with Gene Sequencing & Synthesis Contracts

July 2, 2024
DNA image

The SWP Life Sciences Sourcing team recently awarded 12 contracts to Takara, EurofinsBioneer, Pacific Biosciences, Integrated DNA Technologies (IDT), Illumina, Bio-Rad, and Qiagen, Life Tech, Element Bio, and Genscript. (The first nine listed are completed contracts, with the last three listed still in final negotiations.)

These new groundbreaking Gene Sequencing & Synthesis contracts bring significant savings and value-added purchasing to UC. They also bring a sizable amount of important spend under contract, which improves compliance, creates a safer and more controlled purchasing environment, and ensures these suppliers are responsible partners.

Key highlights of these agreements include:

  1. Contracted Spend and Financial Benefit: These agreements bring an annual spend of $98 million under contract and extend over a period of eight years (five years + three years). These agreements also bring substantial financial benefits, with an annual saving of $5.5 million, amounting to $26 million over the first five years.
  2. Mitigating Risk and Enhancing Security: The Life Sciences team successfully negotiated terms with challenging suppliers and market dynamics, securing free shipping, internships, and patronage for UC. This achievement is notable given the inherent risks associated with gene synthesis products. Two key suppliers also underwent rigorous cybersecurity evaluations. Since many of these suppliers are based internationally, these measures are essential for ensuring security and reliability.
  3. Faculty Involvement: In keeping with our focus on improving stakeholder engagement in sourcing processes, we were very proud to have the involvement of two professors in the RFP process. Faculty and staff bring a very valuable perspective to the supplier assessment and selection process.
  4. Streamlined and Consistent Purchasing Process: With more suppliers under contract, the time to secure a purchase order is significantly reduced. Previously, negotiating with each supplier individually could take months, but now the process is streamlined with consistent pricing and terms. This change allows labs to focus on their core responsibilities without the burden of negotiating every purchase.
  5. Value-Added Benefits: These contracts bring additional benefits to UC, such as risk management and value-added opportunities like internships and sponsorships valued at $500,000 annually. Promoting these programs will encourage broader participation, further benefiting the university.


These awarded contracts represent a major victory for the University of California, reflecting the dedication and strategic efforts of the Life Sciences Sourcing team and stakeholders. Before these contracts, UC had pricing agreements but lacked formal contracts, leading to inefficiencies and challenges in leveraging supplier relationships. Now UC can save time and effort, ensure a smoother and easier procurement process and foster better supplier partnerships. These systemwide contracts not only enhance operational efficiency but also support research and medical advancements at UC.

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