Genmab expands US headquarters, plots 300 hires amid launch of AbbVie-partnered lymphoma med Epkinly

After news broke earlier this month that Danish antibody specialist Genmab would receive up to $8.4 million in state tax credits as part of a plan to grow its presence in Plainsboro, New Jersey, real estate firm Colliers has firmed up the deal.

This week, Colliers announced that it successfully negotiated a 12-year lease for Genmab to expand its office space by 135,000 square feet at the Princeton Forrestal Innovation Park in Plainsboro, where Genmab’s U.S. headquarters is currently based.

Once the project is complete, Genmab will occupy a total of 270,000 square feet at the Park.

The lease negotiation comes a few weeks after the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) revealed that Genmab had been approved for upward of $8.4 million in tax credits over seven years in support of its expansion plans.

As part of the expansion, which is designed to bolster commercialization of Genmab and AbbVie’s recently approved lymphoma drug Epkinly, the company is expected to create 300 new jobs on top of the 668 staffers it already employs at its U.S. headquarters, NJEDA said in the release.

The roles will span commercialization and support functions and will boast a “highly competitive compensation package," according to the NJEDA release.

Genmab, for its part, is expected to invest around $32.6 million to renovate and fit out the new office space, the New Jersey development agency said.

The drugmaker did not immediately respond to Fierce Pharma’s request for more details on the expansion project.

Before its approval last May, AbbVie and Genmab’s Epkinly ranked among the most-anticipated drug launches of 2023.

The CD3xCD20 bispecific antibody works by binding to CD20 on malignant B cells and CD3 on T cells to kill cancer cells, offering strong efficacy.

AbbVie threw in its hat on the therapeutic in mid-2020 when it handed Genmab $750 million upfront for a stake in Epkinly, then simply known as epcoritamab, as well as the rest of the Danish drugmaker’s pipeline of cancer-fighting bispecifics.

As part of the deal, AbbVie is splitting commercial responsibility for Epkinly in the U.S. and Japan and marketing the drug by itself in the rest of the word. Under the arrangement, AbbVie will furnish Genmab with tiered royalties between 22% and 26% of sales in countries where it handles commercialization alone.

Epkinly, which analysts have previously pegged as a potential best-in-class blood cancer drug, snagged an accelerated nod from the FDA to treat diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) in May 2023.

In the market, the drug is duking it out with Roche’s T-cell engager glofitamab, which won approval as Columvi in DLBCL last June.