GSK to shutter Ermington plant in Australia by 2020; 223 jobs affected

Pharma giant GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK) said it plans to shutter its over-the-counter consumer healthcare manufacturing facility in Ermington, Australia, by 2020. The closure will affect about 223 jobs, the company said.

The plant, which is located on the outskirts of Sydney, produces liquid and tablet cold and flu drugs mostly for the Australian market.

Citing a review of the facility that indicated it would not be able to remain competitive in the future without a “significant investment,” the company said it will institute a phased closure over the next four years that will include the transfer of some production to other GSK plants or to CMOs.

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The closure of the Ermington plant isn’t expected to impact other GSK operations in the country, which include the manufacturing site in Boronia that produces respiratory products.

“We have thoroughly evaluated a number of options before taking the decision to close the site, but unfortunately significant ongoing investment would be needed to maintain our Ermington manufacturing facility, making it uncompetitive to keep manufacturing in Ermington in the future,” Michael Tyler, GSK’s vice president of supply chain in Asia, the Middle East and Africa, said in a statement.

Late last year, GSK opened a cutting-edge $5.7 million blow-fill-seal plant in Boronia, outside of Melbourne. That opening came on the heels of the company selling two opiate manufacturing sites to Indian generics maker Sun Pharma that are located in Latrobe, Tasmania, and Port Fairy, Victoria.

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