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Electronic trading of raw materials finally arrived in pharma, food and feed

Raw material purchasers, traders and sellers of APIs, vitamins, amino acids and other food & feed additives take advantage of electronic trading solutions and multilateral trading facilities (commodity exchanges).

Inspired by best practices in other industries, specialized networks and providers like KEMIEX help buyers and sellers in pharmaceutical, human & animal nutrition and specialty chemicals industries to communicate more efficiently and conduct easier, faster and safer trade: * Producers of finished products and premixes, laboratories, CMOs and other buyers gain immediate access to raw materials in all market situations, for strategic and non-strategic products * Trading houses efficiently sell to end users and, if needed, buy from other traders – made possible by enhanced identity protection * Selected ingredient manufacturers and distributors efficiently access new clients and revenues, while prices and names stay protected

A traditional voice brokering industry intermediating between certain buyer and seller types is facing competition for more commoditized chemicals, eventually expecting margin pressure and a strategic push to more complex products and advisory services.

Why now?

KEMIEX and other solution providers are feeling years of board room talks on industry 4.0, the rise of new technologies and a wider user acceptance and maturity of digital toolsets.

It seems an Early Majority started already to engage in e-purchasing and e-selling, referencing to Everett M. Rogers’ famous innovation model, with more to come in 2019 and beyond. Source: Wikipedia

Key benefits for buyers and sellers when trading electronically

In order to keep up with market developments, every buyer and seller must identify and evaluate one or several digital channels for their specific product categories, industry and company’s overarching multi-channel strategy.

KEMIEX is the leading trading platform for APIs, food and feed additives like vitamins and amino acids, offering the largest network of compliant buyers and sellers.

There are some key features where current providers of directories, e-commerce shops and other marketplace or Request-for-Quotes (RFQ) solutions differentiate quite substantially: * Ownership: some marketplaces are owned by established distributors causing concerns about use of price and client data (for other sellers), others enter from outside with vast resources posing a threat distributors and logistics (big Chinese and US e-commerce firms in B2C/B2B). There are only few like KEMIEX that are focused and neutral to the industry, avoiding many conflicts of interest. * Service depth: some providers are pure directories (“yellow pages”) or static e-commerce shops with limited price data, while other providers offer live trade execution services or ancillary services like supplier qualification, logistics or insurance. * Accessibility and member qualification: the majority of platforms are accessible to everyone without previous qualification, whereas some providers promise to qualify their members in terms of quality assurance and financial health indicators. Our partnership with a credit insurance leader that helps to qualify financial health of members is unique. * Geography: many providers are rooted in Asia, home to many manufacturers, while others are based in Europe or Americas. Some platforms host end users mostly in their home countries, others offer global reach like KEMIEX with a strong presence in EMEA and Latin America. * Partnerships: very few providers are able to team up with reputable, established corporate groups to enhance their value proposition. KEMIEX is proud partner of ATRADIUS, a global leader in trade credit insurance.

At KEMIEX, we are convinced to have a unique edge on above criteria, helping us to deliver an unrivalled solution for trading generic APIs, vitamins and other food/feed additives.

Among them, there are the following five benefits:

Instant access to a vast network of qualified counterparties and product availability

Ever had issues to find your product and identify the right counterparty in time, or even experienced contract breaches or non-payment?

We offer safe trading and enhanced product availability inside our vast network, enabled by a restrictive company onboarding procedure and systematic monitoring of trading behaviour.

Network size matters, especially in scarcity situations where KEMIEX could offer Ibuprofen, Calcium Pantothenate, Methionine or other short materials where others could not.

Our unrivalled strategic partnership with leading credit insurer ATRADIUS is designed to assess the financial health of companies, as well as to provide credit risk insight and a jointly developed, credit insurance solution – exclusively for our members and selected markets.

The quality of our sellers and buyers is also determined by performing a quality and business licenses assessment, approved by our certified Qualified Person, Dr. André Rieks.

More about the procedure on our landing page.

Better prices, transparent fees

Some buyers achieved between 3-8% lower purchasing prices through KEMIEX while the sellers kept their margin. This is mostly due to transparent, lower brokerage commissions charged for intermediating. For sellers, relevant product requests from our end users are sent to their attention immediately, allowing them to decide and quote efficiently in few clicks and access transactional types of buyers, keeping net margins stable.

Exclusive market insights for members

We believe that transactional data generated from our trading operations belongs to our network members. Aggregated price benchmarks and other market insights generated from our trading operations are available to all our members without individual preferences, helping them to take better decisions.

Identity and counterparty protection

The markets are large, but the participants are familiar to each other. Buyer demands, and seller prices are kept strictly private and are never shown next to a company name. Moreover, you can easily disable specific counterparties that you would not like to trade with, keeping your supplier universe under full control.

It’s efficient, convenient and fun

Remember when you moved trading from faxes to email? Sending out and receiving hundreds of emails and unwanted calls every day may not be efficient and prone to errors. Having a trading (play) station like KEMIEX will not only make a new generation of procurement and sales managers love RFQs again!

The benefits for the different client groups are manifold, depending on their primary purpose of use: daily buying vs. diversification for opportunistic situations, or strategic products sourcing vs. non-strategic “B” or “C” products.


Swiss-based KEMIEX is an independent premium trade network enabling safe and efficient trade through its pioneering trading platform for high-quality buyers and sellers of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), vitamins and other additives for pharmaceutical, veterinary, food and feed industries.

OUR VISION is safe trading, with reliable counterparties, worldwide.

I hope you find this article insightful and am happy to receive your comments and messages.

Pau Franquet

CEO Kemiex


Core product portfolio of ~3’900 chemicals including:
  • Vitamins: Vitamin A (Retinol), Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide), Vitamin B5 (Calcium pantothenate), Vitamin B6, Vitamin B9 (Folic acid), Vitamin B12 (1-100%), Vitamin B13 (Orotic acid), Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid), Vitamin C phosphate 35%, Vitamin D1-3, Vitamin E (Alpha Tocopherol, 50%), Vitamin H/B7 (Biotin), Vitamin K3
  • Amino acids: Dl-Methionine, L-Methionine, L-Lysine, L-Threonine, L-Tryptophan, L-Valine, L-Leucine, L-Carnitine Tartrate, L-Carnosine, L-Arginine, L-Glutamine
  • Other feed and food additives: sweeteners, preservatives, antioxidants, stabilizers, emulsifiers and more (Acesulfame K, Aspartame, Choline chloride, Inosine, Saccharin sodium, Taurine, Citric Acid)
  • Generic pharma and vet APIs: Amoxicillin, Ciprofloxacin, Doxycycline, Acetylsalicylic acid, Albendazole, Fenbendazole, Florfenicol, Ibuprofen, Ivermectin, Levamisole, Lincomycin, Neomycin, Oxytetracycline, Paracetamol, Taurine, Tetracycline, Thiamphenicol, Tiamulin, Tylosin, Piracetam
  • Many more, available through our search engine landing page