Parts for People

Parts for People

Last year, 85 new Indiana-made products received FDA approval, helping the state achieve about $10.2 billion in life science exports, according to BioCrossroads. A significant portion of that total was generated by the medical manufacturing sector, which has been experiencing continued growth and investment throughout 2019.

At one point, it was estimated that medical device companies manufacture approximately $100,000 in exports per employee annually. That figure is likely even higher today than when it was first determined, reflecting the high-value output of the industry and its importance to the state. All of the new investment announcements that have taken place lately are sure to push that figure even higher, as the last few months have brought news of expansions from multiple firms.

Adding New Biologics Capabilities, $200M

New Jersey-based Catalent, Inc., a global provider of advanced delivery technologies and development solutions for drugs, biologics, and consumer health products, announced it has commenced a $200 million capital investment to expand drug substance manufacturing capacity and drug product fill/finish capacity due to projected growth among existing and future customers. The investments, phased over a three-year program, will be undertaken at the company’s biologics manufacturing sites in Madison, WI and Bloomington, IN.

This followed an earlier announcement to invest $14 million in packaging capabilities at the Bloomington site and add 36 new workers.

The fill/finish capacity at the Bloomington site will be expanded by 79,000 square feet. A high-speed flexible vial line will be installed along with a high-speed flexible syringe/cartridge line. Both will have a filling speed of over 300 units per minute. A fully automated vial inspection machine will also be installed.

“Catalent’s continued investments in innovative technologies and flexible capacity allow us to offer the most comprehensive solutions to bring important and innovative treatments to market faster,” said Barry Littlejohns, president, Catalent Biologics and Specialty Drug Delivery.

Catalent’s 875,000-square-foot biologics development and manufacturing facility in Bloomington employs a growing staff of 900 employees. The site recently achieved regulatory approval for a twentieth commercial product.

1,330 New Jobs Over Eight Years

Bloomington-based Cook Group, a manufacturer of medical devices and one of the largest employers in the state, began its eight-year plan to add up to 1,300 employees in Indiana. The company is currently growing across several of its different operations.

Cook Regentec, Cook Group’s first company in Indianapolis, opened its new facility on Indiana Avenue late last year. The organization will be working with the Indiana University School of Medicine to develop new tools and technologies in the emerging areas of immunotherapy, precision medicine, drug delivery, regenerative medicine, and bioprinting. About 70 workers will be at the new site and more will work at other sites in Bloomington and West Lafayette.

The new Indianapolis location involved the conversion of what was a former beer warehouse into a 22,000-square-foot innovation center with modern, collaborative office space and an adjacent 6,000-square-foot advanced laboratory facility.

Cook Group also has another expansion project taking place in Bloomington. There, the company purchased a former GE refrigerator production site that will eventually be the new home of Cook Profile Park.

Plans call for the establishment of more than one million square feet of space that will effectively double Cook’s headquarters. The old refrigerator factory will become a new medical device manufacturing facility. Cook Group expects to add “at least” 500 jobs in Bloomington at this new facility and its existing location on Daniels Way.

Medical Packaging Maker Investing $5M

Plymouth-based Bomarko, Inc., a global flexible packaging product manufacturer, announced that it will be investing $5 million to expand its operations. The capital investment will include an estimated $2 million for a 20,000-square-foot building addition and $3 million to purchase a new printing press.

Bomarko was founded in Plymouth in 1963 and serves a wide range of industries, including confectionaries, food processing, and medical. The company specializes in solutions for the wound care packaging markets, producing both latex-free and natural rubber-based cold seal adhesives.

Bomarko currently employs 120 people with an average wage of $27 per hour. As a result of this expansion, the company plans to create 20 jobs and increase production.

R&D Facility Project Underway, $3M

Tennessee-based Wright Medical Group N.V., a global medical device manufacturer, is building a new $3 million research and development facility at the Park 30 Business Center in Whitley County. The company expects to add up to 20 high-wage jobs at the facility. Wright Medical Group develops surgical solutions for the upper extremity (shoulder, elbow, wrist and hand), lower extremity (foot and ankle), and biologics markets.

Local officials believe the project could lead to growth across other related firms.

“Given our growing number of suppliers to the medical device industry, we believe that our other companies will benefit from the local development of Wright’s cutting-edge technology,” said Jon Myers, President of the Whitley County Economic Development Corporation.

Construction of the new state-of-the-art facility is being led by design-build team Michael Kinder & Sons, Inc., Elevatus Architecture, and Engineering Resources, Inc.

A Healthy Industry

The number of jobs anticipated as a result of these investments is projected to have a very positive impact on their surrounding areas, as wages in medical manufacturing are roughly 50 percent higher than the state’s average wages. Currently, Indiana maintains the number two spot nationally for its life science industry overall, of which medical devices and other manufactured products make up a substantial portion. This growth trend is forecasted to continue, hopefully enabling us to capture that number one spot in time.