The US-based firms will operate under the iCON brand, and cater to drug makers and contract manufacturing organisations (CMOs).
Under the agreement, G-CON is responsible for POD design, fabrication and site installation, and IPS will provide engineering, architecture, procurement and construction management support to customers.
G-CON said unlike traditional cleanroom structures, its cleanrooms – which include aseptic fill/finish, personalised medicine and production process platform capabilities – are mobile, scalable, and can be repurposed after use.
“PODs provide a prefabricated cleanroom that is autonomous, mobile and easy to clean,” said G-CON.
Reduced timelines & delayed spending
According to senior director of IPS Tom Piombino, G-CON will begin fabrication early at its factory in College Station, Texas, in order to reduce project timelines.
“iCON delivers rapid capacity scaling in a multi-platform, multi-product environment and seeks to reduce the long term delay and capital investment associated with change,” he said.
Operating companies with pending clinical data, indications or drug approvals can delay their capital expenditures longer, because the schedule to establish capacity takes less time, he told us.
“In a traditional project delivery scenario, companies often need to begin spending significant capital several years prior to knowing if their clinical data is trending positively,” said Piombino.
“[The iCON structure] allows companies to close the gap between getting position clinical/approval data and spending capital,” he added.
Firms based in areas where local labor and material costs are lower than at the manufacturing site in Texas, US, will also benefit from ‘regionalisation’, said Piombino.
“If the project site is in an area of the world where the local labor and material costs are lower, then it make sense to source these locally for the parts of the facility that are less technical in nature and can be constructed quickly,” he told us.
“For a platform iCON 4x2000L mAb facility, we estimate that 40% of the overall project installed costs can typically be sourced locally by the iCON Construction Management team,” he explained.