Liverpool pharma firm lands chunk of government life sciences fund

The Pharamon lab in Speke

The Liverpool operation of a Chinese pharma company has been awarded a chunk of a £277m government’s Life Sciences Innovative Manufacturing Fund.

Pharmaron has secured £151 million in investment in capital and people to substantially grow operations in Liverpool, increasing production capacity four-fold for critical gene therapy and vaccine components and creating 174 jobs, while also safeguarding a further 156 jobs.

Pharmaron acquired the Allergan Biologics site in Speke for US$118.7 million in 2021, which consists of a state-of-the-art, flexible cGMP biomanufacturing facility located with 150 staff.

And Ipsen – £75 million investment to grow the manufacture of innovative medicines for neurological conditions, creating 39 new jobs and safeguarding a further 37 at their Wrexham facility.

Ipsen’s Wrexham site is a neuroscience centre of excellence, responsible for developing and manufacturing neurotoxin products, the largest UK site, overseeing manufacturing, API development and fill-finish facilities.

The two other life sciences companies to benefit from the first tranche of Life Sciences Innovative Manufacturing Fund (LSIMF) grants are in Northern Ireland and London.

The investment builds on the pilot Medicines and Diagnostics Manufacturing Transformation Fund (MDMTF) £75m joint public and private investment in the sector, securing 224 new jobs and safeguarding a further 345.

The funding, announced by Science Minister George Freeman today (28 March), forms the first tranche of winning grants from the Life Sciences Innovative Manufacturing Fund (LSIMF).

£17 million in government funding is supported by additional private investment of £260 million, to back companies investing in life science manufacturing projects that help grow our economy, boost health resilience, deploy innovation, minimise environmental impacts and support levelling up.

Freeman said: “The UK’s £94 billion life science sector provides over 250,000 high skill jobs across the UK from drug discovery to diagnostics, medtech devices and digital health.

“The industry is being transformed by the pace of change: from AI to genomics, bio manufacturing to smart stents and personalised immunotherapies, technologies are converging to create a new era of advanced digital products.

“That requires new types of advances manufacturing plant which is why we set up the Life Sciences Innovative Manufacturing Fund, which today’s news shows is working: converting £17 million grants to four companies into £260 million industrial investment.”

LSIMF follows on from the Medicines and Diagnostics Manufacturing Transformation Fund (MDMTF) pilot programme which launched in April 2021. 

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