WuXi Biologics Announce Major Investment And Job Creation In Dundalk

Two hundred new jobs are to be created in Dundalk by WuXi Vaccines, a subsidiary of WuXi Biologics who have announced plans to build a €240 million vaccine production facility on the newly established WuXi Biologics Campus in the town.

The new investment, for which a planning application was submitted to Louth County Council last month is being supported by the Irish Government through IDA Ireland will bring total employment on WuXi Biologics' Dundalk Campus to 600 by 2024.

Welcoming the announcement, Minister for Business, Enterprise & Innovation Heather Humphreys, said: "I am delighted to announce 200 highly-skilled jobs in WuXi Vaccines, which is in addition to the 400 roles announced last year by WuXi Biologics for Dundalk.

"Without a doubt, this is a great win for the North-East and a huge vote of confidence in the local workforce. The Government is fully committed to regional development and ensuring that every region benefits from employment gains. Today's announcement demonstrates, once again, that the Border region is a very attractive location in which to invest."

WuXi Vaccines is a joint venture between WuXi Biologics and Hile Bio-pharmaceutical. The company has entered into the strategic partnership with a global vaccine leader under which WuXi Vaccines will build a dedicated facility to supply a commercial product for the global market.

Dr. Chris Chen, CEO of WuXi Biologics and Chairman of WuXi Vaccines, said: "Vaccine CDMO (Contract Development and Manufacturing Organization) service is one of the next growth areas for WuXi Biologics. We believe our 'co-located' WuXi Biologics and WuXi Vaccines businesses will work well together and contribute substantially to the further future growth of the WuXi Biologics Campus in Dundalk.

"Due to process complexity, extensive analytic testing and rigorous regulatory standards, vaccines are difficult to manufacture, and process and quality control are extremely critical for the quality of the product. This new project to exclusively manufacture a vaccine for the global market is among the first of its kind in the industry and is a further testimony to the technical strengths and premier quality which WuXi Biologics will bring to Dundalk."

The construction of the WuXi Biologics contract manufacturing facility on the campus, which is scheduled for commercial production in 2022, is underway and it is currently hiring for senior roles. It has been designed to be the world's largest biologics contract manufacturing facility using single-use and flexible scale-out production technology. The facility will have the capability to run multiple batches simultaneously, in small or large volumes as required to deliver biologics at lower Cost of Goods (COGS) than traditional systems.

The facility will have the capacity to manufacture highly specialised biologics in small or large volumes in compliance with US FDA and EU EMA regulations for global pharma companies bringing exciting new job opportunities to the region. The new WuXi Vaccines facility, subject to planning approval, will be located within the WuXi Biologics Campus adjacent to the WuXi Biologics 'Factory of the Future' facility and will manufacture vaccine substance and product for a global partner.

Commenting on the development of the WuXi Biologics Campus in Dundalk, Brendan McGrath, WuXi Biologics Ireland Site Head and Vice President said: "Dundalk's potential to become a global hub for biologics contract manufacturing has moved one step closer to reality. As a leading global open-access biologics technology platform, WuXi Biologics' global reach and operations currently counts most of the world's leading biopharma companies as customers.

"Reflecting our commitment to breakthrough scientific innovation by 'Follow-the-Molecule' and supporting the production of innovative biologics at effective Cost of Goods (COGS), WuXi Biologics is actively pioneering technologies for continuous production processes, laying solid foundations for exciting biopharma innovation in Dundalk."

Eileen Sharpe, Divisional Manager Growth Markets, Europe and Emerging Business at IDA Ireland welcomed the announcement. She said: "A second major investment by WuXi Biologics on its Dundalk site is very welcome news. As the first vaccines contract manufacturing facility in Ireland, this planned second project will considerably strengthen our life sciences ecosystem and reinforce Ireland's strong drug manufacturing capabilities. The additional 200 jobs being created by the WuXi Vaccines project will provide a substantial further boost to the economy of not just County Louth, but the whole North East region."


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