[THE INVESTOR] German chemicals and pharmaceutical giant Merck said on Feb. 23 that it will build a new manufacturing and distribution center in Songdo, Incheon, as part of its additional investment of 40 million euros (US$49.30 million) in Asia to tap deeper into the growing regional demand for biopharmaceutical manufacturing.
The new center, located on a 10,141-squre-meter site, consists of advanced cell culture media manufacturing facilities and supporting infrastructure that will facilitate the supply of Merck products to Korean customers. Construction is expected to begin in May to become fully operational by the four quarter next year.
“The rapidly growing biopharmaceutical industry in Korea makes the country one of the key life science hubs in Asia. The push for research and for rapid, custom manufacturing capabilities mean a greater need for accessibility to pharmaceutical products and solutions toward the advancement of research and innovation,” the company said in a statement.
This is the second life science facility investment Merck has made in Korea. In October 2016, the company launched its M Lab Collaboration Center in Songdo. The firm made an investment of 12 billion won to set up the research and development site, employing 10 scientists and engineers to serve local biopharma manufacturers developing biologics to treat rare diseases or different types of cancer.
The 40 million euros investment includes a new manufacturing and distribution site in Mumbai, India, and a mammalian cell culture facility for biosimilar development and manufacturing in Nantong, China.
“Our investments in the important Asian markets of Korea, India and China ensure that our customers have ready access to the products needed to develop new therapies and biosimilars that accelerate access to health for people everywhere,” said Udit Batra, member of the Merck Executive Board and CEO, Life Science.
The latest investment follows Merck’s November 2016 announcement of its 80 million euros life science investment in Nantong, China.
By Park Han-na (firstname.lastname@example.org)