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Almac Group to Expand and Create 312 New Jobs at U.S. Headquarters

11/11/2016 6:10:35 AM

Almac Group to Expand and Create 312 New Jobs at U.S. Headquarters November 11, 2016
By Alex Keown, Breaking News Staff

CRAIGAVON, N.I. – Irish contract pharmaceutical company Almac Group is expanding its U.S. operations and hiring 312 new employees as part of its strategy to increase its global headcount to 5,000 by 2017.

Almac Group will invest more than $25 million at its U.S. headquarters in Souderton, Penn. to expand its existing 240,000-square-foot facility. Additionally, the company announce it plans to lease a 26,000-square-foot office space in nearby Lansdale. Almac currently employs about 1,100 people in Pennsylvania and 4,600 people globally.

“Due to significant industry demand for our services it is essential we build capacity and increase headcount to ensure we continue to compete at a global level. This year we are celebrating our twentieth year in the U.S. and we are excited to make a further commitment within the Pennsylvania State and throughout North America. We are also delighted to announce our further expansion plans across Europe as we continue to build upon our tremendous global success and we are looking forward to an exciting future,” Alan Armstrong, chief executive officer of Almac Group, said in a statement.

Almac’s investment in Pennsylvania follows a $100 million investment in the region the company made in 2007. In a statement ,Gov. Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania said in 2007 that investment to establish its U.S. headquarters in Montgomery County saved 495 jobs and created an additional 264 positions.
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“Since then, we’ve seen Almac Group’s significant contributions to the economic vitality of the region as a major player in south-eastern Pennsylvania’s strong bio-pharma industry, and we look forward to its continued success as it once again chooses Pennsylvania for its operations expansion,” Wolf said in a statement.

The expansion in Pennsylvania was supported in part through government development grants from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. The grant, which came through the Pennsylvania First Program, will allow the company to invest in new machine lines, computer equipment, software and an expanded cold storage area, Almac group said in its statement. This is good news for life sciences workers in Montgomery County and surrounding areas following a number of job cuts from companies like Merck. A year ago Shire PLC moved 500 R&D and sales jobs to suburban Boston from Chesterbrook, Penn. Also London-based AstraZeneca has shifted jobs from Pennsylvania to Boston.

Not only is Almac investing in Pennsylvania, the company said it was also investing more than $6 million at its global headquarters in Craigavon, Northern Ireland to build an additional laboratory and office facility. Almac said about 170 existing employees will be shifted into the new facility. The bulk of those employees are “chemists and analysts involved in supporting drug research, development and manufacture” the company said.

Another area Almac is investing in as part of its new strategy is in Athlone, Ireland. The company said it will spend about $3 million to develop the Arran Chemical Company facility in that region. Almac acquired the company last year.

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