Novo Nordisk to Upgrade Danish Insulin Plant

12.02.2020 -

Novo Nordisk has announced it will spend 800 million Danish Kroner (DKK, about $117.4 million) to further upgrade its insulin production site at Kalundborg, Denmark. The site’s output accounts for about half the world’s output of the life-saving metabolic drug.

Expanding the site, which already encompasses 1.2 million m2, is part of a broader expansion plan that the Danish drugmaker, which counts as the world’s leading insulin producer, said is due to be completed in 2022 but did not describe in detail.

This is the second time in the past year that Novo has announced plans for upgrading Kalundberg. In March 2019, it said it would invest 650 million kroner (at the time $98 million) there.

“Since the turn of the millennium alone, we have invested more than DKK 16 billion in these facilities, which are a cornerstone of our global production network,” said Michael Hallgren, senior vice president for production in Kalundborg.

APIs for two of the company’s new diabetes drugs are manufactured at the site. One of them, an injectable Type 2 treatment marketed as Ozempic, generated sales of $1.65 billion globally in 2019, which the company said was more than a sixfold increase over the $264 million posted for 2018.

Another new drug produced in the Danish city, an oral GLP-1 treatment called Rybelsus (semaglutide), is expected to see similar growth. Novo is currently revamping a plant at Treyburn, North Carolina, which it bought from Purdue Pharma last August, to help with the rollout of the tablets.  It will be supplied with active ingredient from a nearby facility