Fujifilm Boosts Healthcare with Biogen Plant

13.03.2019 -

Japan’s Fujifilm is boosting its healthcare business with the proposed acquisition of Biogen (Denmark) Manufacturing for around $890 million in cash.

The deal gives Fujifilm a large-scale biologics manufacturing complex in Hillerød, near Copenhagen in Demark, which will become the Tokyo-headquartered group’s fourth biopharmaceutical contract development and manufacturing site. Biogen is opening new biologics facilities in Switzerland and no longer needs the Danish plant.

Biogen Hillerød has six 15,000-liter bioreactors for manufacturing cell-culture derived biologics. Fujifilm said the facility will significantly expand its capacity and capabilities to support projects from the pre-clinical phase through to commercialization, and from small to very large-scale volumes.

“This significant investment demonstrates our continued commitment to grow the Bio CDMO business and become an industry leader by combining resources of Biogen Hillerød and Fujifilm,” said Shigetaka Komori, Fujifilm’s chairman and CEO.

The transaction is expected to complete around August 2019, subject to the usual closing conditions and regulatory approvals.

Fujifilm has made several acquisitions in recent years to expand and diversify its healthcare portfolio. On Jun 1 last year, the company completed its purchase of Irvine Scientific and IS Japan for around $800 million.

In addition, the Japanese firm, best known for its photographic and imaging equipment, has been “aggressively” investing to expand capacities and process development capabilities at the sites of its Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies (FDB) subsidiary in the UK and USA.

In January this year, FDB announced it would extend its services to include aseptic filling of recombinant proteins during the fiscal year ending March 2021. At the same time, the company introduced Apollo X, its next-generation mammalian expression system that it said could deliver industry leading titres in excess of 10 gram/liter.

Fujifilm established its bio CDMO business in March 2017 with the aim of achieving 100 billion yen in sales by fiscal year ending March 2024 through aggressive capital investment and the development of highly efficient and highly productive technologies.

The company develops and manufactures a variety of biologics including recombinant proteins, monoclonal antibodies, viral vaccines and gene therapies.