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Janssen invests €300m and doubles size of Cork facility

Janssen invests €300m and doubles size of Cork facility
In late 2017, Janssen Sciences unveiled its plans for a €300m expansion of its Ringaskiddy facility. The main products that will be manufactured at the new facility are immunology and oncology treatment products.

In a matter of months, Janssen Sciences UC will have completed a major expansion in Ringaskiddy, doubling the size of its manufacturing facility and adding significant numbers to its workforce in Cork.

In 2017, Janssen Sciences UC, an affiliate of US multinational Johnson & Johnson, announced that it was set to make a major investment into its Cork operations.

The plans would see a significant revamp of the 40-hectare site on which Janssen Sciences Ireland has operated a biopharmaceutical supply chain facility since 2005.

The investment of €300 million would increase the existing manufacturing space by an additional 19,100 square metres, and provide employment for up to 450 people during construction and an extra 200 people once completed.

Janssen Sciences Project Lead for the expansion of the facility in Ringaskiddy, Jim Breen.
Janssen Sciences Project Lead for the expansion of the facility in Ringaskiddy, Jim Breen.

The lead on the expansion project is Jim Breen. Jim has been employed by Johnson & Johnson for 22 years, holding global roles across engineering, project management and network management in Asia, Europe and the US.

Prior to this, he worked for General Electric and Hercules Incorporated. He is an Adjunct Professor at Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the Engineering Department teaching graduate courses in Engineering and Construction Management in the areas of sustainability, risk management, LEED and project management.

Jim is also on the Board of Advisors for the Schaefer Engineering School at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey.

Jim’s familiarity with, and affection for, Cork runs deep having worked on the original Janssen Sciences UC site selection and building in Ringaskiddy in 2005.

“The expansion of the Janssen Sciences facility in Ringaskiddy will create 200 new full-time jobs, with additional manufacturing capability, a new warehouse, laboratory and administration buildings,” according to Jim Breen.

This construction project began in October 2017 and the company expects to begin production in early 2022, following the receipt of regulatory approvals.

The Ringaskiddy site manufactures innovative cancer therapies and medicines for immune related diseases.

The Cork site currently produces a number of commercial products for the treatment of some of today’s most prevalent disease categories such as immunology and oncology.

Recruitment drive

The new development project will add to Janssen’s global manufacturing capacity of biologic medicines and, once completed, more than 700 people will be employed at the Ringaskiddy site in total. Recruitment is already underway to fill the 200 new roles in the areas of manufacturing, quality, R&D and engineering — www.careers.jnj.com.

“Janssen prides itself as a global company that thinks locally,” says Jim Breen. “It is striving to use local suppliers in the construction phase of the expansion, with a sizeable 65% of the project spend directed towards Irish suppliers.”

Janssen has a long history of supporting the local community in Ringaskiddy and is committed to maintaining this collaboration into the future. “Janssen enjoys excellent relations with its local community, something it has worked at since the facility was first established in 2005,” according to Jim Breen.

The company has made strenuous efforts to minimise the impact on the wider community in Ringaskiddy and Shanbally — a busy area for traffic at peak times — including restricting construction traffic movements to outside peak times where possible and employing a specialist road washing vehicle to ensure that public roads are kept to a good standard during the construction project.

One of Janssen’s priorities is to be a ‘good neighbour’ by remaining in constant contact with the local community.

As well as regular contact with local residents, Janssen also supports its community through various initiatives in primary and secondary schools, such as the J&J Bridge to Employment and Junior Achievement programmes, which both aim to educate pupils about the sciences and the careers they could possibly pursue in this area. Janssen also has ongoing links with second- and third-level educational institutions throughout Ireland in terms of supporting career advancement and developing the skills of younger people in STEM.

In 2016 the company became the first pharmaceutical manufacturing company in Ireland to receive the Business Working Responsibly Mark for its commitment and activity towards creating responsible and sustainable business practices.

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