Q2 Solutions, or “Q Squared Solutions,” is formally launching today as a new clinical trials laboratory company owned by Quintiles and Quest Diagnostics. The new venture is led by a former Quintiles executive.

Some 2,000 people from Quintiles and Quest make up the team at Q2, which currently has a U.S. headquarters in Durham and a “rest of the world” headquarters in Edinburgh, the U.K.

The two partners announced the launch early Wednesday. Quintiles owns 60 percent of the new venture.

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Quintiles (NYSE: Q), the world’s largest life science services company, and Quest disclosed plans to form the joint venture in March, taking on LabCorp, which is based in Burlington. Quintiles is based in Durham; Quest is headquartered in New Jersey.

In May, Quintiles launched a bioanalytics lab in the U.K., its first project related to the Q2 venture.

The joint venture was announced shortly after LabCorp acquired Covance in a multi-billion-dollar deal.

Q2 will work with drug companies in development and testing of new products, the aim being “to improve their probability of success,” a Quintiles spokesperson told WTW when the deal was announced.

According to Q2, a pillar of the company is: “We help customers improve human health through innovation that transforms science and data into actionable medical insights.”

As drug development and related pharmaceutical services become ever more expensive, big companies are looking for partners and service providers who can not only cut costs but perhaps speed up development. And with LabCorp’s recent addition of Covance, Quintiles was facing a bigger competitive threat in dealing with pharmaceutical clients.

Leading the new group is Costa Panagos, who most recently was senior vice president and global head of Global Laboratories and Cardiac Safety Services at Quintiles.

“Today is a milestone day for Q2 Solutions as well as the broader biopharmaceutical industry that we serve,” said Panagos in a statement. “Q2 Solutions provides customers with industry-leading scientific expertise, a large global laboratory network, and a relentless focus on superior quality delivery to achieve better patient outcomes. These elements are foundational to Q2 Solutions’ promise to help customers improve human health through innovation that transforms science and data into actionable medical insights.”

The name, background

“The new organization creates a global laboratory network that combines Quintiles’ scale, clinical trial expertise, and diverse therapeutic experience with Quest Diagnostics’ operational, scientific and quality excellence, supply-chain network and informatics to promote greater innovation, quality and value for biopharmaceutical customers,” said Phil Bridges, senior director for Corporate Communications at Quintiles.

“Q2 Solutions helps customers improve human health through innovation that transforms science and data into actionable medical insights.”

So how did the name Q2 come about?

“Q2 Solutions was selected as the name because it leverages the ‘Q” brand equity and heritage of both parent organizations,” Bridges explained.

“’2 (squared)’ signifies thematic link to a next-era partnership creating a better solution for clinical trials lab management.”

What the execs say

“Q2 Solutions harnesses the complementary strengths, expertise and scale of two industry leaders,” said Tom Pike, chief executive officer of Quintiles. “This new organization is built upon the strong foundation of its parent companies and provides customers with access to an innovative, progressive and responsive partner with the quality focus, global experience, and deep medical expertise integral to drug development.”

“Clinical laboratory services are central to advances in genomics, precision medicine and drug development. Q2 Solutions is well positioned to generate significant advances in these areas to benefit biopharmaceutical customers and patients,” said Steve Rusckowski, president and chief executive officer, Quest Diagnostics. “This transaction is consistent with Quest’s five-point strategy, because it allows us to maximize the value of our clinical trials assets in a capital-efficient manner while refocusing on our core diagnostic information services business.”