In April, Japan’s Fujifilm Corporation announced it was investing ¥14bn in its biologics contract development and manufacturing (CDMO) business to increase production capacity in the US and build an additional process development facility in the UK. And today the firm says it is investing a further ¥3.2bn ($30m) across the two sites.
Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies’s monoclonal antibody (mAb) production facility in College Station, Texas will receive ¥2.2bn to bolster production, and will effectively double the planned bioreactor capacity expansion. The site was fully acquired from Kalon Therapeutics in March.
The firm’s site in Wilton, UK will receive ¥1bn to add a further 900m2 of area at the 930m2 mAb production development facility which opened its doors in September. Fujilfilm added the UK site and a facility in North Carolina in 2011 from Merck & Co.
Spokesperson Kana Matsumoto told Biopharma-Reporter: “We invest capital investment in US and UK in order to incorporate the CDMO needs of monoclonal antibody that are growing particularly among growing biopharmaceuticals.”
“In order to respond to growing customer needs in this field, Fujifilm has decided to make additional investments earlier than scheduled.”
Matsumoto told us the firm’s current mammalian cell culture capacity is 9,000L, but is set to increase to 15,000L next year following the announced addition of three 2,000L single-use bioreactors in Texas in April.
This latest investment will add a further three 2,000L single-use systems, supplied according to Matsumoto by GE Healthcare, pushing total capacity to 21,000L across the three sites by 2019.
On the microbial front, current total fermentation tank capacity is 17,000L, not including 20,000L available through a collaboration at a plant owned by Merck & Co.
The continued expansions support ambitions to increase the CDMO’s biologics revenues to ¥100bn by 2023 – up from current sales of around ¥30bn – placing it in league with Lonza and Boehringer-Ingelheim.