Lonza and BioOne continue investing in Singapore

By Emilie Reymond

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Biotechnology

Swiss custom manufacturer Lonza and Singapore's BioOne Capital have
announced a new joint venture to build a $350m (€263m) large-scale
manufacturing facility in Singapore.

This new project is the second partnership between the two companies - they signed their first joint venture in February this year to build a similar production plant and Lonza now solely owns the plant which will manufacture the cancer drug Avastin for US biotech firm Genentech.

The building of the new plant, which will begin in March 2007, is a boost for Singapore's biopharmaceutical sector.

"With two large-scale biologics plants here, Singapore is poised to become one of the world's top manufacturing locations for biologics," said Swee-Yeok Chu, CEO of BioOne Capital.

"This new joint venture underscores the strength of our partnership with Lonza, the unique value we offer to customers through the operations in Singapore, and BioOne Capital's ambitious strategy to grow our biologics portfolio."

Biologic drugs are one of the key growth drivers of the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, and the sector is booming, with approximately one-fourth of new drugs coming on the market being biopharmaceuticals and generating in excess of $35bn in 2004, with annual sales projected to surpass $52bn by 2010.

Lonza said the facility will operate with "cutting edge" technology with a skilled labour force and will be able to manufacture products with a wide array of processes, yields and technologies.

"It will offer our customers an additional site to complement our existing large scale Portsmouth, NH USA facility, and expand upon our capabilities to serve our clients in this fast growing market segment," said Stefan Borgas, Lonza's CEO.

The final build-out of the facility is expected to be completed and become operational at the latest in 2011, according to Lonza.

When fully completed, Lonza Biologics Tuas expects to hire around 350 people for the operation.

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