Fujifilm grabs Biogen biologics plant in Europe to bolster its CDMO business

Japan's Fujifilm will pay up to $890 million to buy this Biogen site in Hillerød, Denmark and take on its 800 employees as it expands further into the biologics contract business it has been building. (Biogen)

Biogen will open brand-new biologics facilities in Switzerland and has decided it no longer needs its older operations in Denmark. Fujifilm, however, says the Danish facilities will fit nicely into its growing CDMO business and has laid claim to them in its second major deal in less than a year.

Fujifilm will pay Biogen up to $890 million in cash for the facilities in Hillerød, Denmark, and take on the 800 employees. It has also agreed to supply Biogen with some products manufactured there, including multiple sclerosis drug Tysabri.

The Hillerød site includes a 90,000-L biologics production facility with assembly, labeling and packing capabilities, quality control laboratories and warehouses. Fujifilm expects the deal to close by August.

“This significant investment demonstrates our continued commitment to grow the bio CDMO business and become an industry leader by combining resources of Biogen Hillerød and Fujifilm,” Fujifilm CEO Shigetaka Komori said in a statement.

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Biogen CEO Michel Vounatsos said in a statement that with the biologics plant the company has in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, and the $1 billion biologics facility it is building in Solothurn, Switzerland, the company decided it could do without the Demark site. The new facility is expected to come online in 2020. Separately, Biogen has a joint venture with Samsung BioLogics that makes biosimilars.

Fujifilm has been steadily adding to its biologics CDMO business. Just nine months ago, the Japanese company paid about $800 million to buy a pair of cell culture media units from Japan’s JXTG Holdings. In January, it said it would invest about $90 million to expand its biologics plant in Morrisville, North Carolina, and build a new facility in Madison, Wisconsin, to ramp up induced pluripotent stem cell technologies for its pipeline of regenerative drugs and to manufacture iPS cells for others. It also has operations at College Station, Texas.