GSK plant in India to open in 2018

GlaxoSmithKline is nearing completion of its new manufacturing plant in India that will be able to crank out 8 billion tablets and 1 billion capsules a year for the Indian market.

The 1000-crore ($155 million) plant and warehouse in Vermgal, Karnataka, which had been projected to open this year, is now slated to begin production in 2018, according to the recently posted annual report for GSK India.

The plant is being built in anticipation of growth in sales for areas like gastroenterology and anti-inflammatory medicines and is slated to employ about 300. 

Separately, GSK is doing about $75 million worth of upgrades to a plant in Nashik to expand its thyroid and dermatology offerings. That project includes an investment of about $17.8 million to build a facility for manufacturing thyroid treatment Eltroxin. 

RELATED: GSK moves forward in Bangalore with new Indian plant

When former CEO Andrew Witty announced the new Bangalore project, he said among the technologies it would rely on in the new facility would be continuous processing, a technology that moves away from batch production, requiring smaller facilities with lower operating expenses.

GSK has been a leader in searching for sustainable manufacturing techniques and the plant meets LEED construction standards, including incorporating solar lighting and recycled waste water.

According to the report, GSK is also looking for diversity in the hires it makes for the new plant and so far, 30% of new employees are women, including four in leadership roles.