Merck KGaA Invests €150 million in Swiss Biopharma
Merck KGaA is investing €150 million in an expansion of manufacturing capacity for its biotech medicines at Aubonne, Switzerland. The expenditure will include a new building to produce drugs for indications such as fertility treatment and cancer.
The new building is expected to be completed in 2020, with the new quality control labs operational in 2021 and the new lines for aseptic filling ready by 2023, following validation by regulatory authorities.
Facilities will be equipped with what Merck said are cutting-edge technologies dedicated to aseptic filling and quality control, with an innovative design and a flexible operations model to deliver increased productivity.
Two new lines and the new quality control labs will replace existing infrastructure with technological upgrades and higher capacity allowing production of up to 27 million vials per year, the German group said. One of the lines will be dedicated to freeze-dried formulations, the other to liquid formulations.
“This investment reflects our commitment to ensuring that our medicines always meet the highest quality standards and are readily available to patients all over the world whenever they need them,” said Belén Garijo, member of the Merck executive board and CEO Healthcare.
Switzerland is Merck’s prime hub for manufacturing biotech medicines. In addition to Aubonne, it also has facilities at Vevey. Including the new expansion, plans, the pharmaceuticals and chemicals group said it will have invested more than €800 million in Switzerland over the past ten years. Worldwide, its pharma and biotech manufacturing network spans 18 sites.