Novo Nordisk announces $4.1BN investment to expand US manufacturing capacity

By Liza Laws

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images
© Getty Images

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Yesterday (June 24) Novo Nordisk unveiled plans to invest $4.1 billion (approximately €3.8 billion) in a new manufacturing facility in Clayton, North Carolina.

This expansion, one of the largest in the company’s history, aims to enhance the production of injectable treatments for obesity and chronic diseases.

This investment will create 1.4 million square feet of production space, doubling the footprint of Novo Nordisk’s existing facilities in North Carolina. The new facility will generate 1,000 jobs, in addition to the nearly 2,500 employees already in the region, reinforcing North Carolina as a central hub for innovation and biotechnology.

Commitment to meeting global health needs

“It took us a century to reach 40 million patients, but through this expansion and continued investment in our global production, we’re building Novo Nordisk’s ability to serve millions more people living with serious chronic diseases in the future,” said Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, president and CEO of Novo Nordisk.

The facility will feature state-of-the-art technology, rooftop solar panels, and innovative water strategies, aiming for LEED Gold certification. This reflects Novo Nordisk’s commitment to environmental sustainability while delivering high-quality products to patients worldwide.

“Clayton was the first manufacturing site for Novo Nordisk in the US, and this new, large-scale investment confirms the continued importance of our production facilities there as cornerstones of our company’s growth,” said Henrik Wulff, executive vice president, product supply, quality and IT, Novo Nordisk. “For decades, we have partnered to foster a well-trained, dedicated and diverse local workforce in North Carolina. In Clayton and across our global manufacturing sites, we are driven by one purpose: to deliver more for the millions of people living with chronic diseases – and this facility will help us achieve just that.”

Construction timelines and community impact

Early work on the 56-acre site is already underway, with construction expected to conclude between 2027 and 2029, engaging around 2,000 external contractors at the project’s peak. This long-term investment underscores Novo Nordisk’s strategic commitment to bolstering its manufacturing capacity to meet the growing demand for its innovative treatments.

“It’s a historic day for Johnston County,” said Butch Lawter, chair of the Johnston County Board of Commissioners, who announced county grants to support the expansion. “Thirty-one years ago, Novo Nordisk decided to make a new home here in Clayton. Then, in 2016, they announced a new facility right across the street - the single largest life sciences investment on state record at the time. Today, they’re breaking that record again… with a third facility, 1,000 new jobs and a vote of confidence in the partnerships we have forged in the community over the decades.”

In 2024, Novo Nordisk will increase its total production investment to $6.8 billion, up from $3.9 billion last year, to meet the growing global demand for its medicines. This substantial increase in investment highlights the company's proactive approach to scaling its operations to serve a larger patient population.

Global manufacturing network and commitment to quality

Novo Nordisk’s global manufacturing network includes strategic production sites in Denmark, the US, France, Brazil, and China. These sites are critical in producing nearly half of the world’s insulin supply, as well as GLP-1 medicines for diabetes and obesity treatment and medicines for rare diseases like haemophilia and growth disorders. The company employs almost 20,000 people in its manufacturing units, all dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of quality and efficiency in a sustainable manner.

The new Clayton facility represents a significant step forward in Novo Nordisk’s mission to improve the lives of those living with chronic diseases. By expanding its production capabilities and investing heavily in sustainable practices, the company is poised to meet the increasing demand for its life-saving medications. 

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