Case | HBS Case Collection | November 2005 (Revised March 2006)

Genentech - Capacity Planning

by Daniel C. Snow, Steven C. Wheelwright and Alison Berkley Wagonfeld


While facilitating a complex clinical approval process over the next two to three years for a family of new cancer drugs, Genentech must develop a long-term capacity plan for a major class of new cancer products. Adding to the complexity and uncertainty is the fact that the lead time for planning, building, and certifying a new $600 million plus production-scale facility is five years. In addition, ensuring that the best process technology is incorporated into such a new plant makes the task facing David Ebersman, the senior vice-president of products operations, and his management team a daunting one. Frames the issues Ebersman and his team face and outlines the approach to date.

Keywords: Factories, Labs, and Plants; Growth and Development Strategy; Management Style; Management Teams; Time Management; Product; Product Development; Business Processes; Performance Capacity; Planning; Risk and Uncertainty; Complexity; Pharmaceutical Industry;


Snow, Daniel C., Steven C. Wheelwright, and Alison Berkley Wagonfeld. "Genentech - Capacity Planning." Harvard Business School Case 606-052, November 2005. (Revised March 2006.)