Thermo Fisher to pump $82.5M into St. Louis biologics manufacturing site

Thermo Fisher Scientific headquarters
Thermo Fisher unveiled a major piece of a $600 million plan to upgrade its bioprocessing capacity. (Thermo Fisher)

Four months after Thermo Fisher Scientific announced a $600 million global push to upgrade and expand its bioprocessing operations, the company is unveiling a major piece of that plan.

Thermo Fisher will shell out $82.5 million to expand production capacity at its St. Louis biologic drug substance manufacturing site. The investment will more than double its overall production capacity while supporting both short-term COVID-19 demand and long-term efforts, the company said.

RELATED: Thermo Fisher plots $600M manufacturing boost to meet COVID-19 demand—and its work won’t stop there

The Waltham, Massachusetts-based CDMO said the expansion in St. Louis will create 169 new jobs. The site, which currently employs 700 people, produces biologic compounds for the treatment of COVID-19, cancer and other diseases.

Two new manufacturing suites will be part of the 58,000-square-foot expansion. The site will house about $15 million in updated equipment that will expand manufacturing and production to support a 5,000-liter processing scale and 2,000-liter capacity, the company said. The current footprint of the plant is 360,000 square feet.

“This new expansion will enable further innovation in biologics manufacturing to address the continued growth in important therapies and medicines,” Michel Lagarde, Thermo Fisher's executive vice president, said in a statement.

Thermo Fisher got into the contract manufacturing business back in 2017 with a blockbuster $7.2 billion deal to buy Patheon, one of the largest contract manufacturers in the world at the time.