Amgen adds to Holly Springs NC’s growing biotech impact

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Amgen plans to open a new production facility in Holly Springs by 2025.

Amgen

South Wake County continues to be a significant player in the biotech industry as giant Amgen opened a manufacturing facility on Monday that could eventually employ more than 350 people.

The new Amgen plant, scheduled to open by 2025, will be built on the road from another massive biotech investment from Fujifilm Diosynth, which is building The plant is worth $ 1.5 billion and can employ more than 700 people. The pharmaceutical company Seqirus also has a significant facility in the city.

This is the culmination of the multi-year strategy of the city of Holly Springs, where the plants Amgen and Fujifilm, which for many years worked to attract companies in the field of life sciences.

“Holly Springs has really set itself up for this,” Wake County Commissioner Sig Hutchinson said Monday at a pioneering event for Amgen.

Hutchinson noted that the city has become a generous partner in finding land deals, offering incentives and facilitating construction within the city.

Holly Springs also benefits from the fact that land prices at the Research Triangle Park, where most of the region’s biotechnology has historically been conducted, have risen significantly over the past decade.

“I think there’s a lot more to come here,” Hutchinson added.

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Registration of the proposed Amgen plant in Holly Springs, which in the coming years will employ up to 355 people. Amgen

Amgen plans for growth

Since the beginning of the pandemic, there has been a wave of investment in expanding biotech production in the United States

Amgen, in addition to the Holly Springs facility, is also building a plant in Ohio. More than 700 people will work at the two plants together.

The Holly Springs plant will produce the active ingredients that are part of many of the drugs Amgen produces, including for the treatment of heart disease, osteoporosis and psoriatic arthritis.

Amgen announced the expansion at Holly Springs last August after it received state and local incentives worth more than $ 35 million. This was reported by News & Observer. Labor will pay an average of $ 119,510.

Robert Bradway, CEO of Amgen, said plants in North Carolina and Ohio are critical to meeting the increased demand for products.

“Demographics are in our favor,” Bradway said in an interview. “We have an aging population all over the world. With age, people become more vulnerable to chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, osteoporosis, treatments where we are very active.

“These two expansion facilities will allow us to continue to grow to meet the demand for our drugs,” he said.

Bradway added that Amgen’s investment was made possible by the 2017 federal tax reform. Amgen was one of the biggest winners of this tax reform, which allowed companies to repatriate cash held abroad, This was reported by Marketwatch.

“I want to emphasize that we were able to decide to return these jobs here in North Carolina and Ohio, thanks to tax reform that took place a few years ago,” Bradway said. This reform “has made these places competitive with others in the world.”

Bradway said many companies, such as Amgen, were considering expanding outside the U.S. before the reform.

Creating a diverse workforce

Amgen officials said they considered more than a dozen locations before choosing Holly Springs, which the company said had important access to both talent and other life science companies.

In particular, Bradway said, Amgen was interested in the triangle because of its population diversity.

Amgen is one of dozens of major U.S. companies that have teamed up in an effort called OneTen, which was formed after the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis by police. Efforts are aimed at merging companies in an attempt to hire 1 million black Americans for well-paid jobs over the next 10 years.

Gov. Roy Cooper, who attended the landmarking on Monday, said North Carolina was ready to work with Amgen to find a variety of talent. He noted that the state has more four-year black colleges and universities than any other state.

“You want to hire a different workforce, we can help with that,” Cooper said at the event. “In North Carolina, diversity is not only right, it’s best.”

For its part, Amgen said it also plans to hire more workers without a four-year degree and offer more training opportunities.

Amgen has also said it will introduce it Experience Amgen Biotech program for some Wake County schools. The program gives middle and high school students the opportunity to work with high-tech laboratory equipment and introduce them to careers in biotechnology.

Amgen said it hopes to launch the program locally this fall.

This story was created with the financial support of a coalition of partners led by Innovate Raleigh as part of the Independent Journalism Scholarship Program. N&O retains full editorial control over the work. Learn more; go to bit.ly/newsinnovate

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Zachary Ins is a reporter for Innovate Raleigh for The News & Observer and The Herald-Sun. It covers technologies, startups and major street businesses, biotechnology and education issues related to these areas.



Amgen adds to Holly Springs NC’s growing biotech impact

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