Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies’ decision to purchase Biogen’s biologics facility signaled its intention to become a major contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) industry player, after spending $890m (€786m) to acquire the site.
Fujifilm has now underlined its ambitions by announcing an approximate $928m expansion project at the same location.
The company wants to double the Danish site’s current drug substance manufacturing capacity, as well as expanding its capabilities in fill/finish, and to make improvements to its assembly, labeling and packaging services.
After the project is complete, the facility will become of the ‘few major large-scale manufacturing facilities’ in the bio-CDMO industry, the company stated.
The plan is to add an additional six 20,000L mammalian cell bioreactors, which would see the facility house 12 bioreactors and increase overall capacity to 240,000L, by the fall of 2023.
Prior to this, a new packaging line will be added in spring 2022, and a new fill/finish production line by summer 2023.
According to Takatoshi Ishikawa, general manager of bio-CDMO division at Fujifilm, the rapid growth and high capital investment has been driven by orders placed by customers. Partly, this has been down to capacity reservation made by the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator.
Further than this, Martin Meeson, CEO of Fujifilm Diosynth, stated that the investment would allow the CDMO to scale production volumes to manage both small and large batches – enabling the company to work with partners from pre-clinical through to commercialization.
However, the company did reveal that it may take some time for it recoup its investment at the site. Fujifilm Diosynth plans to manage sales of ¥100bn ($928m) by the fiscal year ending March 2022 and expects to exceed ¥200bn in sales by March 2026.
At present, Fujifilm Diosynth is focusing on expansion, leading to the creation of a research center earlier this year in the UK, and also investing in its gene therapy capabilities at its site in the US.