Pharma giant MSD plans to invest €40m in Tipperary plant

2 May 2017

From left: Ger Carmody, site lead at MSD in Ballydine, with Ger Brennan, managing director for human health at MSD Ireland. Image: Dylan Vaughan

Pharma giant MSD has announced it will spend €40m this year on its facility in Ballydine, Co Tipperary.

MSD remains one of Ireland’s major pharma employers with more than 1,800 staff here, 600 of which are based at its Tipperary plant that has been in operation for more than 40 years.

Now the company has revealed it is to upgrade its Ballydine facility to the tune of €40m this year, as part of a €75m investment that is already underway.

The total spend for this year includes the installation of a new spray-drying facility, which develops and supplies the active ingredients and final formulated product for its medicines at its manufacturing and R&D facilities.

This technology is used in a number of new products to improve how the medicines are absorbed by patients, particularly in the areas of diabetes, heart disease, women’s health and anaesthesia.

MSD said that over the course of more than 50 years, it has spent more than $2.5bn investing in its Irish facilities.

Ger Brennan, managing director of MSD human health, said: “Our manufacturing sites in Tipperary, Cork and Carlow have established themselves as critical to MSD’s global vision of inventing for life, with our Irish workforce playing a lead role in the production and development of next-generation treatments in areas such as oncology, diabetes, HIV and hepatitis C.

“With diseases becoming more complex, it is vital that the pharma sector invests today for the healthcare needs of tomorrow. It is pleasing that MSD, with investments such as this, is leading the way in this regard.”

Earlier this year, MSD revealed that it was to spend up to €25m over the course of the next three years to expand its clinical trials programme in Ireland.

The company believes that despite a growth in the number of clinical trials for cancer medication, there is scope for a significant boost in the country.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic