Ex-Sanofi site offering manufacturing space for SME pharma in London

By Dan Stanton

- Last updated on GMT

The 17 acre ex-Sanofi site in London, UK offers manufacturing space for SME pharma
The 17 acre ex-Sanofi site in London, UK offers manufacturing space for SME pharma

Related tags Pharma giant sanofi Pharmacology Pharmaceutical industry

An ex-Sanofi site in the UK has been redeveloped to offer start-up and small pharma access to manufacturing space.

The facilities in Dagenham, London had historically made pharmaceuticals - employing at one point over 4,500 people - but former owners, French Pharma Giant Sanofi, announced plans to shutter the site in 2009, and production ended in 2013​.

The site, which was sold to regeneration specialists Site Operations Group (SOG) last year, Dagenham, has now reopened to offer access to manufacturing space “that money can’t buy,” ​said former Government Minister Steven Norris, officially launching ‘Londoneast-uk’ last week.

“What you have at Londoneast-uk are scientific facilities; for example production facilities for pharmaceuticals which are temperature controlled, dust controlled, humidity controlled,”​ he added. “These facilities would probably cost you, if you were going to build them from new, upwards of £50m [$76m] – and that’s just the build costs.”

Paul Smith, a spokesman from SOG, told in-pharmatechnologist.com there pharma are able to rent some of the 17 acres of specialist buildings on short or long-term licenses, depending on their requirements, and existing labs can be remodelled to suit client’s requirements.

“Naturally Sanofi has taken their drug production equipment away,”​ he said, “but the clean room/sterile facilities all have extensive behind-the-scenes, very high-tech filtration systems, fume extraction systems to ensure a clean air environment in some of these of the buildings.”

While he told us SOG is speaking to several science-based companies, details for now remain confidential.

In 2011​, Pfizer closed its R&D facilities in Sandwich, Kent and the site was redeveloped as a ‘discovery-park,’ with over 40 pharma, biotech and life sciences companies leasing lab space.

Similarly, AstraZeneca’s Biocity in Alderley Park, near Manchester, offers emerging pharma firms the opportunity to use state-of-the-art facilities independent of the Pharma giant.

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