Forging New Trails in Drug Development Technologies

Bend Research Inc. was founded in 1975 by two men who shared a pioneering spirit and a commitment to innovation in the field of membrane technology.

Founders Harry Lonsdale and Richard Baker started the company based only on some dreams, very little money and a small building designed to be resold as a house if their dreams didn’t pan out.

In the mid-1980s, Chris Babcock joined Harry Lonsdale in steering the company toward the development of technologies for the pharmaceutical industry. Rod Ray, current CEO and chairman of the board, began working for Bend Research as a high-school senior in 1983 and claimed his first job title was “grunt.” In addition to leading the company today, he holds a Ph.D. and is a licensed professional engineer in two states.

How We Got Started
Initially, the company competed for government grants through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. Most of the technologies developed through these SBIR grants and contracts were based on the use of synthetic membranes. Notable projects that resulted from this technology included developing a wastewater recycling system for NASA’s space station, recovering potable water from the exhaust of military vehicles, and developing systems to recycle industrial wastes from manufacturing processes.

Bend Research Today
Bend Research worked exclusively with Pfizer to develop new drug delivery technologies for over a decade. In 2008, Bend Research announced that the terms of the agreement with Pfizer had changed from exclusive to non-exclusive and began to independently offer unique drug delivery expertise and technologies to other firms.  Bend Research continues its long-term collaboration with Pfizer, but also works with many other companies, using proprietary technologies developed jointly by the two firms to advance medicines to market.

Bend Research has more than 100 clients, with whom it has manufactured hundreds of formulations under the FDA’s stringent cGMP guidelines. The company believes this success is due the people who work here, and who demonstrate every day the scientific and engineering expertise, creativity and work ethic required to sustain the company's position as industry leader pioneering pharmaceutical science.

Bend Research is a cornerstone of the high-tech industry in Central Oregon and was recently recognized in the community as the 2011 and 2013 Distinguished Large Business of the Year. The company has grown and succeeded because of its abilities to innovate and adapt, setting the standard for leadership and diversification.

In September of 2013, Bend Research was acquired by Capsugel and is now part of its Dosage Form Solutions business unit headquartered in Morristown, N.J.  The acquisition provides Bend Research's clients access to additional technologies, R&D capabilities, and global manufacturing infrastructure for the advancement of client compounds from concept through clinical to commercial manufacture.