Pharma firm to create 200 jobs

US-founded drug firm, Jazz Pharmaceuticals is to spend up to €50m on a new manufacturing facility in Co Roscommon; creating more than 200 jobs in the process.

The move marks the first time the biopharmaceutical company — which specialises in treatments for unmet medical needs — has ever built its own manufacturing and development site, with each of its existing facilities having been acquired or inherited.

Construction at the 55,000sq ft, 17-acre site in Monksland will begin immediately, with it expected to be fully operational by 2016.

The construction phase will create 160 jobs, with the company directly taking on 50 additional staff when the facility opens.

Jazz switched its corporate headquarters from Palo Alto to Dublin after acquiring Irish-based speciality drug firm, Azur Pharma for €1.5bn two years ago. As a result of that deal, Jazz already employs 50 people here.

Jazz chairman and chief executive, Bruce Cozadd called yesterday’s announcement “a milestone” for the company, adding that the €45m-€50m investment (which will go towards construction, development and personnel costs) strengthens the company’s international manufacturing capability and underlinesits commitment to expanding its presence in Ireland.

IDA Ireland chief, Barry O’Leary said the move is a “strategically important development for Jazz”, adding that Ireland is well-placed to support manufacturing for the company’s growing commercial portfolio.

Welcoming the news, Taoiseach Enda Kenny, who met Jazz’s management yesterday, said the announcement is a vote of confidence in the Irish economy and creates a chance for those who lost jobs in the pharma sector in recent years to return to the workforce.

PharmaChemical Ireland described the move as “very encouraging”.


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