The manufacturing centre for biologics will be located in Chendu, a city in southwest China, which on completion, will become the largest such site in the region.
The site will cover 1.3 million-square-feet and house WuXi Biologics’ twelfth drug substances manufacturing facility. The site will house drug development and commercial manufacturing facilities as well.
Upon completion, the contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) stated that it would hold bioreactor capacity of 48,000L but noted that this would be the ‘initial’ capacity. A spokesperson for WuXi Biologics confirmed that this holds the potential to be increased threefold.
Chris Chen, CEO of WuXi Biologics, stated, “Supported by 205 ongoing biologics projects using WuXi Biologics’ open-access and proprietary platforms as well as our unique manufacturing paradigm of ‘Global Dual Sourcing within WuXi Bio’, we will continue to expand manufacturing capacity, based on our portfolio needs, to provide a robust and premier global supply chain that can enable our partners and benefit patients worldwide.”
The suggestion that the company will continue to expand its capabilities, even after such a large facility commitment, mirrors the activities that WuXi Biologics has undertaken in recent years, with 2018 seeing a series of announcements of global investments.
Within China, the company only recently announced that it had broken ground on a $240m (€203m) manufacturing facility close to Beijing, which also possessed 48,000L bioreactor capacity.
The company suggested that the increased capacity generated by the facility would enable it to acquire further partners, with it recently announcing its first commercial manufacturing agreement with US-based Amicus and an extended collaboration with i-Mab, a Chinese biotech.