German Life Sciences Company Investing $220M

German Life Sciences Company Investing $220M

Evonik, a global provider of drug delivery technologies, announced plans to expand its production facility in Lafayette, creating more than 80 highly skilled, high-wage jobs by the end of 2025. With the expansion, the complex will be one of the largest sites for active pharmaceutical ingredients and Evonik’s second-largest site in the U.S. employing 650 people.

“Indiana is increasingly a leader in medical innovation due to the clustering of quality companies like Evonik that bring high wages and future-focused industry to our state,” said Indiana Secretary of Commerce Brad Chambers.

Headquartered in Essen, Germany, Evonik plans to invest $220 million to expand its production facility at 1650 Lilly Road in Lafayette. The expansion will allow the rapid and flexible production of a variety of lipids that may serve future applications of mRNA technology in infectious disease control, cancer immunotherapy, protein replacement and gene therapy. The additional facility space also ensures a rapid and extensive supply of lipids to fuel the continuing battle against COVID-19.

The company received up to $150 million in funding for this project from the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), a component of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. BARDA promotes the advanced development of medical countermeasures to respond to 21st century health security threats.

“With this investment in lipid production, we are further expanding our leading position on the global market and specifically strengthening our Health Care business,” said Evonik CEO Christian Kullmann. “It supports our strategic transformation into ‘Next Generation Evonik’, contributing value-added solutions with superior environmental and socio-economic profiles to our customers.”

Active in more than 100 countries, Evonik employs 33,000 associates worldwide. Evonik’s Tippecanoe site in Lafayette is one of the world’s largest sites for active pharmaceutical ingredients and Evonik’s second-largest site in the U.S. The company will begin hiring in Lafayette in 2024 for positions across operations, quality assurance and control, engineering, and supply chain.

By expanding the production of specialty lipids, Evonik is strengthening the company’s nutrition and care division as it supports pharmaceutical companies worldwide with comprehensive services for developing and manufacturing complex parenteral and oral drug products.

“As a strategic partner for pharma and biotech companies, we are using the new facility to support our customers in developing nucleic acid-based drugs right up to commercialization. These new therapies are the future,” said Thomas Riermeier, head of Evonik’s Health care business. “We are also evaluating further expansion of our formulation services and scale-up capacity, thereby consolidating our leading position as an end-to-end provider.”

Pharmaceutical formulation is a multi-step process of mixing the active drug with all other components. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Evonik supplied lipids to the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine and vaccination campaigns worldwide. The company has been supplying global pharmaceutical companies with the lipids needed for use with mRNA active ingredients.

“Evonik’s strategic expansion at Tippecanoe is fantastic news for the entire Greater Lafayette region,” said Scott Walker, president and CEO of Greater Lafayette Commerce. “The town of Shadeland, Lafayette, West Lafayette, Tippecanoe County, the Purdue Research Foundation and Greater Lafayette Commerce all supported this effort and not only look forward to the high-value jobs it will create, but also the important role the new Lipid Center of Excellence will play in our nation’s vaccine preparedness.”

Pending approval by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) board of directors, the IEDC will commit an investment in Evonik Corporation of up to $2.1 million in the form of incentive-based tax credits and up to $250,000 in conditional training grants. The IEDC will also offer up to $3 million from the Hoosier Business Investment (HBI) tax credit program based on the company’s planned capital investment in Indiana. These tax credits are performance-based, meaning the company is eligible to claim incentives once Hoosiers are hired and trained. The Greater Lafayette Commerce and Duke Energy offered additional incentives.

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