Simon Coveney TD, Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, today welcomed the announcement by BioMarin International Ltd that it is investing in a new drug product filling project at its Shanbally, Cork, facility. This project will allow the company to maximise the flexibility of the site with the expansion of the operational manufacturing capacity to meet the rise in the global demand for its therapies to treat rare genetic diseases that mostly affect children.
Speaking at the event, An Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Simon Coveney, said: “Today’s announcement is an exciting development for BioMarin, a company which has thrived in the Cork biopharmaceutical cluster. This investment will not only bring opportunities for regional employment but also positive knock-on effects for the local economy. It demonstrates the success of the Irish Government’s commitment under the Regional Action Plans for Jobs to provide quality jobs in regional locations. I congratulate BioMarin on their success to date and look forward to welcoming future announcements as they continue to further develop their plant here in Cork.”
The drug product filling project investment estimated at approximately $43 million, which is projected to create an additional 51 roles across all disciplines, will augment the site’s drug substance manufacturing and secondary packaging and labelling capability. A planning application will be submitted in the coming weeks and it is anticipated that an additional 100 personnel will be onsite during the construction, commissioning and qualification phases.
BioMarin’s Executive Vice-President, Robert Baffi, said: “The introduction of fill finish capacity at Shanbally provides for fully integrated manufacturing from bulk to drug product onsite. During our seven years of operations at Shanbally we have seen tremendous growth at the site. This expansion assures that an increasing amount of our commercial products will be manufactured at the site.”
Executive Director of IDA Ireland, Mary Buckley, said: “I am delighted to welcome BioMarin’s latest investment. As a global leader in the manufacturing of treatments for rare diseases, the company has quickly gone from strength to strength in Ireland. The Shanbally operation is ideally positioned to accommodate this latest expansion due to the existing skill base and the proven track record of success in Cork over the past seven years. Today’s high value investment in Cork further consolidates Ireland’s position globally as a location of choice for biopharmaceuticals.”
Since opening its doors in Shanbally in 2011, the company has grown to just over 350 employees in Cork, with an additional 55 people based in Dublin and more than 2,600 employees globally. Just over one year ago BioMarin completed an expanded warehouse, new administration and utilities offices, a canteen and conference facilities. This year saw the completion of a wastewater pretreatment plant and a new Bio-Assay Laboratory is currently being commissioned.
BioMarin focuses on developing first-in-class and best-in-class therapeutics that have the potential to improve clinical outcomes of patients with rare genetic diseases. The company currently has seven approved products that are the only drugs available on the market today for the diseases they treat.