Japanese photography company Fujifilm has announced a $188 million investment to establish a cell culture media manufacturing facility in Research Triangle Park (RTP), North Carolina, USA.
The new site will be operated by subsidiary Fujifilm Irvine Scientific, a company that specialises in the development and manufacturing of advanced cell culture solutions for life science research, bioproduction, cell therapy manufacturing, and medical applications.
The manufacturing facility will be over 250,000 sqft, located across 64 acres in RTP. The site will support cGMP manufacturing of animal component-free, dry powder, and liquid media, adding additional production capacity for Fujifilm Irvine Scientific of 800,000 kg per year for dry powder, 3,300,000 litres per year for liquid, and 40,000 litres per day of water for injection (WFI).
Like many other global businesses, Fujifilm recognises the value our region offers life sciences companies by providing top talent, easy access to transportation, and a quality of life that is second to none
Fujifilm Irvine Scientific has experienced rapid growth over the past decade and the forecasted demand for cell culture media to support bioproduction and advanced therapies is projected to grow at a CAGR of 10-12% through 2031. To meet the requirements of its customers, the company made the strategic decision to expand its capacity by constructing manufacturing facilities in biotech centres around the world. This strategy ensures a secure supply chain, and rapid, reliable delivery of products through the development of extensive regional supply networks, critical to supporting cell and gene therapies.
Sharing the harmonised quality system and raw material program of Fujifilm Irvine Scientific, this regional supply network enables the company to rapidly adjust to natural disasters or unforeseen issues and continue operations and delivery of products to customers worldwide. As an area popular with life science companies, RTP in North Carolina was selected as an ideal location, providing enhanced supply chain security, and for customers in the region, more efficient shipping and faster delivery. Fujifilm’s group also operates cell culture media manufacturing facilities in California, USA, the Netherlands, and the Saitama and Aichi prefectures in Japan.
“Fujifilm’s intensive investment in the life sciences field represents our commitment to be the dedicated partner for customers in the biopharmaceutical industry,” said Teiichi Goto, CEO of Fujifilm. “With the enhanced capabilities of our global manufacturing sites for cell culture media, we will continuously contribute to customers’ robust manufacturing process and creation of innovative therapies to make the world a healthier place.”
“Our customers require rapid, reliable delivery of cell culture media to support their commercial production,” said Yutaka Yamaguchi, CEO of Fujifilm Irvine Scientific. “The cell culture media that will be manufactured at this new site in North Carolina will help ensure a steady supply of raw materials for biologics, cell and gene therapies, and other key medicines that are essential to human health. The additional production capacity will ensure we meet the projected demand for cell culture media from our customers worldwide.”
“We’re proud that FUJIFILM Irvine Scientific is the latest company to call the Research Triangle Park home, bringing with it many new job opportunities,” said Wake County Board of Commissioners Chair Sig Hutchinson. “Like many other global businesses, Fujifilm recognises the value our region offers life sciences companies by providing top talent, easy access to transportation, and a quality of life that is second to none.”
“It is encouraging when companies with a successful experience in Research Triangle Park recognise the advantages and continue to invest and innovate in the Triangle Region. We are pleased to have collaborated with Fujifilm Corporation, its consultants, and our regional partners at Wake County Economic Development, Economic Development Partnership of NC, and the NC Department of Commerce on this project,” said Scott Levitan, CEO of the Research Triangle Foundation.
Land development and construction are scheduled to start in spring 2023 with operation of the facility beginning in 2025.