The beginning

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Estendart started life in 1986 as a research centre at Massey University. The University Council decreed that the research centre would be self-funding and it would allow animal health companies to access the expertise and research facilities at Massey University. In effect, the Council created a small CRO (Clinical Research Organisation). Over the next few years the animal health companies utilised this access extensively and the centre thrived. In 2003 the research centre was incorporated and renamed as Estendart Ltd.

In 2010 Estendart became a privately owned company through an MBO, with unchanged access to expertise and research facilities in the university. In 2011, a research farm (Jennersmead), also owned by Massey University and located at Bunnythorpe, was sold to Estendart. Jennersmead was established by Glaxo Animal Health in the 1960s for their research purposes. It is a small purpose-built research farm that is integral to the operation of Estendart.

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Acquisition by Invetus P/L

Invetus acquired the business operations of Estendart Ltd, effective 1 October 2018.

The site, continuing on the grounds of Massey University, will be known as the Estendart Research Centre (ERC). Additionally, Invetus will continue to use the purpose-built research farm (Jennersmead) at Bunnythorpe.

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Estendart staff includes several vets and scientists, as well as specialised QA, Archivist and animal nursing staff. Dr Alan Alexander, the founder and former owner of Estendart, continues in his role as General Manager.

Scope of Research

Estendart Research Centre provides services in two key areas:

  • Biomedical research

  • Veterinary pharmaceutical and vaccine developments (animal health)

In both areas Estendart Research Centre undertakes studies involving careful handling of animals to generate reports for regulatory submissions. The major global animal health companies have have been key customers for animal research studies. Over the past five years, there has been increasing emphasis on biomedical research and providing animal models for medical developments.

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Our expertise is providing animal models to generate in vivo data to:

  • Develop new veterinary medicines and vaccines

  • Evaluate the toxicity of medical and biological compounds

  • Evaluate safety and efficiency of medical devices

  • Demonstrate the safety/ tolerance of pharmaceuticals

  • Investigate proof of concept for new compounds

  • Conduct clinical trials (GCPv, VICH)

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What we offer

  • ERC’s cumulative expertise and reputation - developed over 32 years of providing a variety of study reports for development programmes or submission to regulatory authorities in Australasia, USA and Europe.

  • Experience in a wide variety of animals including pigs, chickens, cattle, sheep, horses, dogs, cats and lab animals.

  • Broad GLP accreditation which extends to preclinical safety, pharmacokinetics, bioequivalence, toxicology and safety, and medical devices. GLP compliance has been maintained for over 20 years; additionally, Estendart is certified as a GMP compliant manufacturer, and as an approved transitional facility.

  • GLP compliant clinical pathology services covering haematology, clinical chemistry and histopathology, essential for safety and toxicology studies (available through Gribbles Veterinary Ltd.)

  • Flexibility and the ability to adapt to Sponsors’ requests with customised animal models.

  • Experience in preparing study protocols and final reports that meet international quality standards such as GLP and GCP and also comply with recognised guidelines for studies submitted to the FDA and EMA.


Estendart Research Centre can access laboratory, pen and field facilities, and is located alongside Massey University, AgResearch Ltd and Plant & Food Ltd (Crown Research Institutes). These organisations provide Estendart Research Centre with access to unique resources, close support from expert academic and scientific staff plus add to an extensive array of animal research facilities for both food producing and companion animals.

Jennersmead Farm is a purpose-built research farm constructed by Glaxo Animal Health in the 1960s. It is 18 ha divided into 16 small paddocks, well fenced and watered and with a number of supporting buildings plus water bore. It is regarded as integral to the conduct of Estendart’s business.

Massey University Farms - Access to a variety of farms within only a few kilometres of our main office. There are two dairy farms, a sheep & beef farm, bull farm, chicken and pig facilities and a Deer Research unit. We also have access to the Post Mortem rooms, lab facilities, equine unit and surgery rooms.

Plant and Food Research - Modern purpose built laboratories. We have an MOU with Plant and Food that permits Estendart to lease lab rooms when needed

AgResearch - Large animal indoor facilities


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Please contact Dr Alan Alexander, General Manager, Estendart Research Centre

Phone: +64 6 350 0770