According to a new study, contract research organizations and contract service providers in a multi-county, bi-state region near Kansas City generate $1.33 billion annually and employ 9,000 to meet the testing and consulting needs of major drug companies and biotech startups. With some 70 companies involved in drug discovery, clinical trials, manufacturing, marketing, and regulatory consulting, the Kansas City region’s life sciences activity reportedly surprised the Massachusetts-based company that conducted the study.

David Vranicar, interim CEO of the Kansas Bioscience Authority (KBA), one of the organizations that commissioned the study, said he was also surprised by the results even though he “knew there was a wealth of contract research and service activity in the region.” Vranicar noted that equally significant to revenue generation was the region’s contracting diversity, “spanning every stage of drug development required to identify and bring new drugs and devices to market.” See Kansas City Business Journal and KBA Press Release, June 21, 2011.