Reducing R&D timeline by quickly identifying potential solutions

To maximize profitability, a contract research organization used Reaxys to speed up their research so that they could cut costs while still producing top-quality work.

The contract research organization has traditionally approached each new project the same way, which included a lot of up-front fixed costs, both in terms of time and money, just to get the project underway. In order to become more efficient, they needed to compress those initial steps and reach the next part of their research stage much more quickly. Changing their research workflow model has since created a number of benefits for their organization.

Interview with Director of Business Development, Contract Research Organization - Reaxys Customer Story | Elsevier Solutions


Gregory Martin*, Director of Business Development at a contract research organization wanted to minimize his lab’s R&D timeline for a new project. His goal was to drive revenue by quickly identifying potential solutions and determining the most profitable way to charge the client.

Our chemists were asked to develop a series of molecules that could be used to do coupling reactions with ring systems, explains Martin. We needed to find the best reaction pathways for generating the molecule, and then decide on a cost structure that would work for everyone.


The lab team was able to sift through a large number of different chemistries using Reaxys, and narrowed its focus on the molecules with the highest probability of success. We placed a core reaction that used two types of reagents and a functional ring group structure to find how many different chemistries were possible, explains Martin. Reaxys gave us 200-300 examples right away, and then we settled on 30-40 unique molecules based on our literature search. With detailed results at his disposal, he decided that because the client was looking for 25 potential molecules, it would be best to bill the project as a per-molecule deliverable.

Gregory Martin, Director of Business Development - Reaxys customer story | Elsevier Solutions

With Reaxys, I knew for sure that our chemists could develop between 25 to 35 unique molecules. Before, I would have to make an educated guess as to how many we could produce.

Gregory Martin, Director of Business Development


Reaxys substantially increased the team’s productivity, and even enabled them to work on two to three reactions for different clients at the same time. For each project, the chemists were able to skip over lengthy beginning steps and start producing the deliverables right away, increasing the company’s billable rate per chemist and also its cash flow. Our clients want to see that they are not just paying for extended research time, he explains. But that they are getting the actual development of compounds that they can then test and evaluate in their own laboratories — and also use this information to protect their intellectual property.

*Names have been changed to protect rights to innovation

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