Thermo Fisher continues global expansion push with CSL Behring biologics plant lease

Thermo Fisher Scientific headquarters
Thermo Fisher late last year dumped $24 million into its biologics facility in Ireland. (Thermo Fisher)

Thermo Fisher Scientific has aggressively expanded its biologics manufacturing capacity in recent months, dumping millions into capital spending.

Now, in another deal that will keep its supply chain growing, Thermo Fisher has inked a long-term tie-up at CSL Behring's Lengnau, Switzerland, facility to boost its biologics manufacturing capacity, the companies said Wednesday.

As part of the deal, Thermo Fisher will take over operations of CSL's "state-of-the-art" biologics facility once it comes online in mid-2021. In return, Thermo Fisher will streamline discovery and manufacturing for CSL's drug portfolio, including producing hemophilia B therapy Idelvion at the Lengnau site.

According to CSL's website, the drugmaker broke ground on the $413 million Lengnau plant in June 2015. The company planned the site to employ 300 once it was fully operational.

Thermo Fisher intends to continue to expand the Lengnau site to "support additional biopharma customers," the company said.

"We continue to invest to meet the growing need for flexible biologics capacity, and Lengnau will significantly expand our pharma services capacity and capabilities," Thermo Fisher Executive Vice President Michel Lagarde said in a release

RELEASE: Thermo Fisher invests to boost production of cell culture media

Thermo Fisher's newest lease agreement follows a rich year for the Massachusetts-based CDMO, which has been aggressively expanding its global capacity.

In November, the company said it would invest nearly $24 million in its biologics site at Inchinnan, Scotland, to boost its ability to manufacture cell culture media. It said it expects to complete the work in 2021.

The month before, Thermo Fisher said its 2019 capital expenditures would reach $270 million with investments in its fill-finish operations, distribution in Asia, South America and India, and a virtual reality training center in Greenville, North Carolina.

RELATED: Thermo Fisher shoulders into gene therapy manufacturing with $1.7B deal for Brammer

The company in 2019 also paid $110 million for a GlaxoSmithKline API plant in Ireland, and the CDMO unit planned to open a viral vector facility in Lexington, Massachusetts, later in the year.

That facility was part of a $1.7 billion cash deal Thermo Fisher pulled off earlier this year for Brammer Bio, which allowed Thermo Fisher to play in the growing field of gene-modified cell therapies and in vivo gene therapies. The 50,000-square-foot plant will have 200 employees, the company said.

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