Lingering anger over Pfizer's ($PFE) decision to close its research operation in Sandwich, England, may abate now that there is a deal to buy the extensive site.
A private consortium is buying the 297-acre campus for an undisclosed amount, creating a great deal of relief among folks there. "This is extremely welcome news and a major move forward for East Kent. We were set an enormous challenge by government to mitigate the withdrawal of Pfizer from its site in Sandwich," InPharm reports Paul Carter of the Kent County Council telling the BBC.
Locals severely criticized Pfizer in 2011 when the company disclosed that the facility would close and Pfizer would cut 2,400 jobs as part of efforts to reduce costs. Local officials said the company wasn't doing enough to assist its former employees and was letting them go faster than government could provide help.
The company has since backed off its plan to abandon the site and is retaining about 650 people there. As part of the sale, it has agreed to lease 250,000 square feet of office and laboratories, the new owner tells InPharm. It also has leased some space to pharma companies Mylan ($MYL), York Bioscience and Peakdale.
"One of our key objectives was ensuring a bright future ahead for Sandwich--as a high-tech life sciences R&D facility--and the purchase by the Discovery Park Limited consortium builds on the foundations laid in the 18 months since Pfizer announced its decision to withdraw," Carter says.
- read the InPharm story
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