United Kingdom

FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies confirms £400 million investment plans to create  the largest multi-modal biopharmaceutical manufacturing site in the United  Kingdom

The expansion  is expected to create up to 350 highly-skilled jobs on Teesside.

December 2, 2021

FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies

The expansion  is expected to create up to 350 highly-skilled jobs on Teesside. BILLINGHAM, UK, 2 December 2021 ― FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies, a world leading contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) for biologics, viral vaccines and viral vectors, has confirmed a £400 million planned investment  package at its UK facility in Billingham, Teesside. This investment package more than doubles the site’s existing  development and manufacturing footprint, creating the largest multi-modal biopharmaceutical manufacturing site in the United Kingdom1 and is expected to create up to 350 highly-skilled jobs. The new facilities are expected to be operational by late 2023.

The new multi-modal campus will include two new state-of-the-art facilities (a viral gene therapy GMP2 facility and a GMP  mammalian cell culture facility) and is part of a ¥90 Billion Yen global  capital investment package initially outlined by FUJIFILM Corporation in June
2021.

“We all know that there has never been a more important time to invest in biopharmaceuticals – and £400 million, the largest investment in British biopharmaceutical manufacturing for decades, signals FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies’ intent to be able to offer multi-modal options to respond to our customers’ needs with flexibility and agility to help solve public health demands,  and deliver the medicines  and vaccines  of tomorrow,” said  Martin Meeson, Chief Executive Officer of FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies. “With a strong growing demand for microbial, cell culture and viral gene therapy services, we are adding the capacity and latest technologies within one campus to offer a range of modalities to build an offering that will deliver novel promising treatments to patients for years to come.”

“I am delighted that Fujifilm has identified the massive  potential in the UK for growth and innovation. At £400m, this is a significant investment in British biopharmaceutical manufacturing and will power our response to some of today’s most urgent global health challenges  and deliver life-changing medicines  and vaccines  to patients in need” said  UK Prime  Minister, Boris Johnson. “It will enable the expansion  of the Billingham campus and create 350 new jobs – attracting the best innovators and researchers and bolstering our Life Sciences industry as we build back better from the pandemic.”

“It’s our vision for the FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies’ site in Billingham to be the beating heart of the rapidly expanding North East Life Sciences ecosystem, and this investment will create up to 350 highly-skilled jobs and additional benefits across the local and national supply chain,” added Paul  Found, Chief Operating  Officer, FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies UK.

The investment will add a new cell culture facility in the expanded Billingham campus and triple existing  cell culture capacity capabilities at the site with the addition of 4x2,000L and 2x500L single  use  bioreactor  production capabilities for the manufacture of both monoclonal and novel  antibody treatments. This expansion will also  include the addition of the company’s MaruX™ GMP  continuous manufacturing platform to provide  customers with a differentiated connected and integrated production  platform offering.

In addition to the cell culture facility, the new investment package will expand the viral vector and gene  therapy services offered by FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies from the UK with dedicated process development capabilities and a commercial-scale viral gene therapy GMP  facility, both located  on the Billingham campus. This expansion will deliver  a ten-fold increase in gene  therapy production capabilities by FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies in the UK, cementing its leadership in the viral vector market; and complementing its existing  global  footprint including sites in College Station,  Texas and Watertown, Massachusetts, both in the USA. The investment will also  facilitate the expansion of existing  capabilities in vaccine manufacturing, along  with new capabilities including mRNA  production.

FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies previously announced plans  to expands its viral vector and gene  therapy offerings in Darlington, UK, with process development laboratories and manufacturing capabilities to support the production of investigational use of gene  therapies in early-stage clinical  trials (first-in-human). The process development laboratories have already begun  operations, with GMP  manufacturing services starting in spring 2022.

Further to this, an expansion of the existing  5,000L GMP  microbial  production  facilities will also  take place at the Billingham campus. This expansion will increase microbial fermentation capacity by almost two-thirds. The expansion will include over 20,000 sq. ft of modular  downstream clean room space, including two primary recovery and refolding suites, two purification suites and a column  packing room. It is designed to implement FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies’ SymphonX™3  technology. The expansion also includes quality control (QC) labs, office space and materials storage. This expansion will be operational by late 2023/early 2024.

 

1 Based on internal company research as of December 2021.
2 Good  manufacturing practice 

Media  contact:

Andy Ross
Deputy  Head  of Corporate Communications – Europe
FUJIFILM Europe GmbH
Tel: +44(0)7766497949

Images FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies, Billingham, Teesside