Regeneron is expanding its biologics plant in Ireland again, with its newest addition involving another $100 million investment and the addition of 300 more jobs.
The U.S. drugmaker, which now boasts the largest bulk biologics plant in a country that has attracted many large pharma sites, will invest the $100 million to add laboratory space, parking areas and a number of manufacturing suites to increase drug substance production capacity, spokeswoman Alexandra Bowie said in an email.
When Regeneron picked up the 400,000 square foot, former Dell computer plant in Limerick in 2013, short-term plans were to invest between $250 million and $300 million and hire 300 employees.
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Two years later, Regeneron forecast its operation in Limerick would employ 500 by the end of 2017. Now with the new plans, headcount is projected to reach 800 by the end of 2018 while its total investment will be about $750 million, says IDA Ireland, which has provided some support for the project.
“The Limerick plant has grown because Regeneron overall has grown," Bowie said. "Ten years ago, we had 600 people, and now we have 6,000. Ten years ago, we had zero approved drugs and now we have six available to help patients in need."
The expansion will be to increase capacity for currently approved products. The company also has said that it has 17 product candidates in clinical development, which include blockbuster eye drug Eylea and fully human monoclonal antibodies, including six in collaboration with Sanofi.
Among products Regeneron and Sanofi have developed are high-profile drugs Praluent, Dupixent and Kevzara. The two, however, are letting their antibody discovery agreement lapse at the end of the year.