Biocon granted permission for $158m expansion at Indian biomanufacturing site

By Dan Stanton

- Last updated on GMT

Biocon is looking at expanding its site in Bangalore, India. Image: iStock/Noppasin Wongchum
Biocon is looking at expanding its site in Bangalore, India. Image: iStock/Noppasin Wongchum

Related tags Monoclonal antibodies

Indian drugmaker Biocon has been given the go-ahead to expand a biopharmaceutical manufacturing facility in Bangalore.

Earlier this week, the biopharma firm was given clearance by Bangalore’s high-level committee on industrial investments to begin construction on a new facility at its site in Bangalore, India.

According to spokesperson Rumman Ahmed, an investment of 10.6bn rupees ($158m) has been planned across the site, which includes the construction of a solid oral dosage manufacturing unit for small molecule generics that has already begun.

But the company is also looking at expanding its biologics capabilities at the site, Ahmed told, in order to support its growing monoclonal antibody portfolio.

Biocon has already launched two proprietary monoclonal antibodies, Alzumab (itolizumab) for psoriasis and Biomab (Nimotuzumab) for glioma, while its biosimilar version of Roche’s mAb Herceptin (trastuzumab), Canmab - co-developed with Mylan – was approved in India in December 2013.

The Bangalore site already has 200,000 sq ft of biologics capacity used to manufacture Alzumab and Canmab, and also houses a training academy​ the firm has set up in order to address the shortage of biotech workers in the country.

Despite the approval from local government, further details were not divulged but according to Ahmed the investment was first proposed in January.

Biocon has been investing across its network over the past few years, buying a Vizag, Andhra Pradesh potent API facility from its supplier Acacia Lifesciences in October last year​, several months after laying down plans to build a commercial API and intermediates site in Mangalore​, on the West Coast of India.

In 2010​, the firm invested $161m to set up an isulin manufacturing plant in Malaysia.

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