Fujifilm adding $120M facility to its gene therapy operations in U.S.

Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies in Texas
CDMO Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies is quickly building up its gene and biologics manufacturing. (Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies)

Continuing its expansion efforts, Japan’s Fujifilm will make a major investment in its U.S. gene therapy operation with plans for a $120 million addition to its facilities in Texas.

The company said its CDMO Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies will add a building to its College Station, Texas campus which will include 6,000 square meters of new laboratories as well as eight new 500 / 2,000L single use bioreactors. A Fujifilm spokeswoman said the company intends to add 75 to 100 more scientists when the first phase of the new project is ready in 2021.

“Fujifilm is aggressively pursuing growth strategies with both capital investment and in-house development of high-efficiency and high-productivity new technologies,” the company said in a statement.

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RELATED: Fujifilm pays Biogen nearly $1B for Denmark biologics site

The announcement comes shortly after the CDMO completed a deal to buy a biologics plant in Denmark from Biogen, taking on 800 employees. Fujifilm and Biogen also agreed the CDMO would provide Biogen with the drugs the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based biotech had been manufacturing at the site. That includes its multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri.

The Japanese company has been on a spending spree in the last couple of years. In addition the the recent deals, it paid about $800 million to buy a pair of cell culture media units from Japan’s JXTG Holdings. In January, Fujifilm said it would invest about $90 million to expand its biologics plant in Morrisville, North Carolina, and the company is ramping up its induced pluripotent stem cell technologies for its own pipeline of regenerative drugs and intends to manufacture iPS cells for others.

The company says it expects the CDMO business to generate nearly a $1 billion by the end of fiscal year 2021, ending March 2022.