Over 500 New Jobs in Sector

Almac is to create 550 health and life sciences jobs with an £80m expansion of its Craigavon manufacturing base.

The company is set to develop a new 100,000 sq ft manufacturing centre of excellence and a 40,000 sq ft diagnostic development and manufacturing centre.

Almac said the completion of the two major facilities will support the creation of hundreds more jobs at the north Armagh site, spanning a range of lab and non-lab-based roles.

The announcement comes two years after Almac accounted plans to create around 1,000 new jobs in the north over a three-year period.

Last year it pledged £200m in a capital investment programme to meet growing demand for its business.

In June, Almac announced its “most successful financial year ever”.

Sales rose by £105m (14.3%) to £840m in the year to September 30 2022.

The growth took the group’s global workforce to more than 7,000 people.

The latest investment will specifically benefit Almac’s pharma services and diagnostic services divisions.

The former is involves the development and commercialisation of new treatments, including oncology and immunology; while the latter offers a range of biomarker discovery, development and commercialisation solutions to biopharma firms globally.

Almac said its new 100,000 sq ft manufacturing centre will house a custom designed dispensary area, multiple production suites, process equipment wash facilities and a lineside warehouse for ambient, refrigerated and frozen storage.

It will primarily support solid oral dose products, offering additional capacity for further strategic production contracts.

Almac said it will be operational by the third quarter (Q3) of 2024.

The smaller 40,000 sq ft facility is expected to be online by Q1 2024.

Almac’s group chief executive, Alan Armstrong said the company is committed to re-investing all profit back into the business.

“This £80m expansion and the creation of 550 new, highly skilled jobs in Northern Ireland will ensure that we remain the global leaders in our industry, giving our clients and ultimately patients across the world who benefit from these therapeutics, the best possible offering from Almac,” he said.

Jeremy Fitch, head of Invest NI’s business growth group, said the agency is supporting both projects.

“Almac’s commitment to innovation and excellence has positioned it as a cornerstone of our region’s life and health sciences success story and supported it to build a world-renowned reputation for ground-breaking work in the global pharmaceutical industry,” he said.

Pictured are Almac’s group chief executive, Alan Armstrong (right) announcing the £80m investment in Craigavon with Invest NI’s Jeremy Fitch.

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