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Pfizer announces investment in advanced paediatric manufacturing at Sandwich R&D site

20/06/19

 

  • Pfizer is investing £5 million to grow its manufacturing capabilities for paediatric medicines at its Discovery Park site in Sandwich, Kent
  • Since 2018, Pfizer has invested more than £36 million into advanced manufacturing and innovation at Sandwich site
  • Kent County Council also announces new fund for innovation at Discovery Park
     

Pfizer is continuing its commitment to the UK Life Sciences sector by today announcing a £5 million investment in its Discovery Park site in Sandwich, Kent. The news coincides with the Medicines Manufacturing Industry Partnership (MMIP) annual conference, this year hosted by Pfizer at Discovery Park, which will celebrate the UK as a world-leader in medicines manufacturing.

Today’s investment will enhance Pfizer’s patient-centric design and manufacturing capability for paediatric medicines in clinical trials. The sum will cover the cost of a highly-specialised novel manufacturing technology enabling scientists to explore innovative ways to make medicines more palatable with flexible dosing for children – amplifying the company’s patient-first approach.

This investment - which underscores the special connection Pfizer holds with the local Kent area - is the latest in a series of investments Pfizer has made in advanced manufacturing technology at its site in Sandwich. Totalling £36 million since 2018 and leading to renewed growth and 80 new scientific jobs, these investments form part of Pfizer’s ongoing strategy to invest in research and development.

Since 1954, our site at Sandwich has played a crucial role in the development of new, life-saving medicines. This investment demonstrates Pfizer’s continuing focus on innovation in advanced manufacturing and highlights our patient first approach; ensuring that cutting-edge technology can be used to design and manufacture medicines for clinical trials that are palatable for children with the most serious illnesses. Today’s announcement builds on a series of investments we have made to this site over the last few years and further reinforces our commitment to progressing science here in the UK.”

Julian Thompson, Vice President, Global Regulatory Operations and Sandwich Site Head, Pfizer UK

The local economy is also set to benefit. An additional £5 million of funding has been unlocked from Kent County Council through the East Kent Growth Fund which was established in 2012 to help investors grow businesses and create new jobs in the area.

Paul Carter, Leader and Cabinet Member for Health Reform, Kent County Council said: “Today, at the MMIP conference, we are delighted to announce that Kent County Council is investing £5 million in a new venture capital fund aimed at supporting SME Life Sciences businesses at Discovery Park. This builds on efforts made by KCC and partners in the Sandwich task force, which helped to secure the site over the last seven years and has grown business investment. There are now 3,500 people employed on the site, 1,100 more jobs on the site than when the task force was set up. Our investment, coupled with Pfizer’s ongoing contribution to the site and surrounding life sciences community, will boost Kent’s position as a centre for scientific excellence in the UK. We are pleased to be working together with Pfizer, Kent’s universities and other key partners in the Kent economy to develop this initiative.”

There are currently over 700 employees based at Pfizer’s site in Sandwich, working across a number of functions critical to the delivery of Pfizer’s mid-to-late stage medicines portfolio. The Pharmaceutical Science group is home to Pfizer’s only small molecule pilot plant that manufactures medicines for use in clinical trials worldwide. In addition, the Regulatory Submissions hub supports 50% of Pfizer’s global submissions to 175 countries.

Mayer Schreiber, CEO of Discovery Park, Discovery Park said: “Discovery Park is a thriving part of the South East’s life science community, working with its tenants and partners to build a world-leading science park with a focus on manufacturing and digital transformation. We are delighted that Pfizer is continuing to invest in world-class science and technology at the site helping to drive innovation. In addition, Discovery Park welcomes the new source of venture capital funding via Kent County Council for life sciences businesses on the Park.”

 

About the Medicines Manufacturing Industry Partnership (MMIP)

The MMIP represents the voice of medicines manufacturers in the UK. It was established jointly by the Government and the biopharmaceutical industry in 2014 to ensure that the UK is recognised by the global medicines industry as a world-class advanced centre for medicines manufacturing. The UK's medicines industry is one of the country's leading manufacturing sectors.

The Partnership aims to ensure that the UK continues to be an attractive place for this high-value industry to secure exports, provide high skilled job opportunities and contribute to UK productivity. The UK Life Sciences Industrial Strategy recognised the sector’s high productivity and the MMIP is now an expert group under the direction of the Life Sciences Council

 

Find out more:

 

Pfizer has a long and proud history of being part of world class science in the UK. Our site in Sandwich, Kent was one of the world’s first mass production facilities for penicillin back in the 1950’s  and continues to be an important location for Pfizer 60 years later.

 

Over the past 65 years, we have continued to invest in the UK and are committed to working with the NHS and other healthcare organisations across the industry developing solutions to improve the delivery of care and patient outcomes.

 

 

PP-PFE-GBR-1788 / June 2019