Ireland’s largest indigenous generics manufacturer announced the €86m ($99m) investment programme at CPhI Worldwide this week.
According to the traditionally animal-focused firm – which entered the human pharmaceuticals space in 2000 – €50m of the investment will be dedicated to the research, development, and manufacture of human medicines.
Chanelle Pharma will build a €11m manufacturing facility in Galway, on Ireland’s west coast, to make liquid generic drugs for the US market, and spend €45m on R&D over the next five years, owner Michael Burke told us in Madrid, Spain.
Our human medicine business is responsible for around 50% of the firm’s annual turnover, he said, adding: “We have approximately 500 people employed and a strong pipeline in human pharmaceuticals – we hope to launch 55 products within the next five years.”
The company also plans to add 350 jobs during this time: “We have expanded our staff by over 70 people in the past 12 months, and have 91 vacancies at the moment in the company.
“The positions will be largely R&D focused, but will also include roles in quality control, quality assurance, production, and tabletting,” we were told.
Although headquartered in Ireland, where all manufacturing takes place, Chanelle Pharma has offices in the UK, research laboratories in Ireland and Jordan, and exports its products to 96 countries.
The firm also undertakes contract manufacturing of generic drugs in solid dosage forms, liquids and powders for pharmaceutical companies worldwide.
“We export the majority of our drugs,” Burke told us. “Our main strategy is to develop products and link with multinational and big generic companies that sell our products under their brand name.”
While he did not disclose identities, Burke did tell us Chanelle does business with the top ten generic companies – with approximately 75% of products being sold in Europe.
And how might the UK’s impending withdrawal from the EU impact this strategy? “We’re not particularly worried about Brexit,” he said. “It’s such a pity it’s happening; we’d love to see the UK as part of the European market.”