Orthopaedic products company DePuy Ireland is to establish an innovation centre at its Ringaskiddy, Co Cork plant.
The centre will see the company expanding its operations to carry out next-generation product and process development. The centre is supported by IDA Ireland.
The setting up of the centre will create employment for 20 individuals with PhD, MSc and bachelor degree qualifications in biomedical engineering, materials and quality.
"The level of innovation involved in this project is very high given that the work will be at the cutting-edge of precision knee implant design and associated manufacturing processes," said Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, MicheŠl Martin TD.
"It is highly significant for DePuy Ireland. It positions Cork as a strategic centre of excellence in process and product development and ensures an integrated approach to product development from concept to full commercialisation."
The success of the Cork facility and Ireland's life sciences regulatory record were instrumental in the Cork plant being chosen for this investment, added Martin.
"DePuy Ireland has operated as a highly successful operation and this investment is a clear endorsement by its corporate HQ of the Irish facility's role in the total global operations. It also provides a clear example of how Irish companies can build on success and move into additional knowledge-based activities, giving them a crucial advantage over international competitors into the future."
"This is a significant development for DePuy and the quality and commitment of our workforce were key factors behind this investment in Cork", said Ed Mackey, vice-president of worldwide operations, DePuy Inc. "We look forward to building on the success of our current operations."
Depuy Inc is part of the Johnson & Johnson family of companies. It established its manufacturing facility in Cork in 1997 and its global supply chain operations in 2002. Currently, the company employs over 600 people in Cork.
By Niall Byrne