New vaccines plant for Bavarian Nordic
million (€33.6m) in a production facility that will be the largest
of its kind in Europe, producing up to 120 million vaccine doses a
The company has entered into an agreement with Orion Pharma to take over the Finnish pharmaceutical company's production facility and administrative offices located in Kvistgaard, 30 kilometres north of Copenhagen.
The announcement, coming only two days after Akzo Nobel opened a new vaccine facility in the Netherlands, provides further evidence of the renaissance in the human vaccines market.
Peter Wulff, Bavarian Nordic's president and CEO, said that the facility would give the firm an in-house supply of its MVA (Modified Vaccinia Ankara)-based vaccines, in development for HIV, tropical diseases and smallpox.
Wulff noted that the company had looked at several locations, including the US, Canada, Germany, France and Sweden, but the site in Kvistgaard was the best option. It is relatively new and only a third of the buildings will need to be re-constructed.
Bavarian Nordic will move its administrative headquarters to Kvistgaard while the clinical trial materials facility will remain in Berlin, Germany. The company said it also has plans over the next year to significantly strengthen its research organisation in Munich.
The new vaccine facility will be ready for manufacture in 2005 and initially will produce vaccines against smallpox for the US and European markets along with various planned vaccines against HIV.
An existing production partnership with German vaccine manufacturer IDT is not affected by the acquisition and in fact will be expanded due to the expected increase demand for vaccines against smallpox and HIV in the coming years.
With the establishment of bulk production, Bavarian Nordic expects to hire 50 new employees, and should the company establish filling and packing at the site, there may be a need for an additional 60-80 staff.