Evaluating Big Pharma's Manufacturing Investment Plans - Pharmaceutical Executive


Evaluating Big Pharma's Manufacturing Investment Plans
The pharmaceutical majors target biologics and emerging markets in their manufacturing expansion activities and plans.

Pharmaceutical Technology

Eli Lilly. In April 2013, Eli Lilly indicated it plans to invest an additional $180 million in the company’s insulin manufacturing operations in Indianapolis, Indiana. The investment is in addition to the company’s November 2012 announcement for a $140-million expansion of the company’s Indianapolis insulin-manufacturing operations. Eli Lilly is proposing several other ancillary investment projects totaling about $80 million, including a $40-million product-inspection center. The latest $180-million proposed investment would add a second insulin cartridge-filling line and increase its insulin-active-ingredient manufacturing capacity through productivity enhancements. In addition, Eli Lilly is investing EUR 330 million ($436 million) in a new biopharmaceuticals facility at its Kinsale campus in Cork, Ireland, according to a Feb. 27, 2012 IDA Ireland press release.

Merck & Co. Earlier this year, Merck & Co. opened a new $120-million, 75,000-m2 pharmaceutical manufacturing facility in Hangzhou, China. The facility has capacity of up to 16 high speed lines to package pharmaceutical tablets and sterile products. Annual packaging capacity is more than 300 million packages. The facility builds on other recent investment by Merck in China. In 2011, the company established its Asia R&D headquarters in Beijing and committed to invest more than $1.5 billion in R&D in China during the next several years.

AstraZeneca. In June 2013, AstraZeneca announced that Cambridge, United Kingdom will be the location for the company’s new UK-based global R&D center and corporate headquarters. The new 330 million ($507 million) facility in Cambridge will bring together AstraZeneca’s small-molecule and biologics R&D activity. The purpose-built facility, which will be located in the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, is part of the company’s previously announced plan to create strategic global R&D centers in the UK, US, and Sweden by 2016. The company is also proceeding with further restructuring activity, which entails an estimated global headcount reduction of about 5050 over the 2013-2016 period. AstraZeneca also moved forward with two key production facilities during 2012 in China (Taizhou) and Russia (Vorsino) to supply products to both markets locally. These sites are intended to begin phased commercial production in 2014.


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