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14 companies you’ll see at the NIBRT biopharma careers event

28 Mar 2023

Are you heading to the NIBRT biopharma careers event this year? Here are some of the major players that you could meet there.

This coming Saturday (1 April), the National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT) will hold its ninth annual Careers in Biopharma event.

The event will take place at The Campus Cherrywood, a 30,000 sq ft facility comprising specialised lab, office and collaboration spaces built for early-stage life sciences businesses to grow alongside established sci-tech players.

This event is an opportunity for students, graduates and jobseekers looking to join the biopharma sector.

Attendees will get to meet employers actively hiring for the biopharma industry and learn about training and upskilling opportunities.

Registration for the event is free and those interested in attending can register in advance. Here are the companies that will be attending the event.


Research-driven pharma player AbbVie is one of the top life sciences companies around the globe and produces Humira, used to treat a variety of ailments such as rheumatoid arthritis and Crohn’s disease. The company bought Syndesi Therapeutics last year.

AbbVie has Irish operations in Cork, Dublin, Galway, Mayo and Sligo. In September 2022, the company announced 70 new jobs as part of a €60m expansion at its Cork base.


Having opened its first Irish facility in Blanchardstown in 2013, Alexion’s presence on the island has grown, with the addition of an aseptic vial-fill-finish facility in Athlone. The company specialises in targeting rare diseases, including myasthenia gravis and hypophosphatasia.

In 2020, it was acquired by AstraZeneca in a $39bn deal. In 2022, it announced that it would invest €65m into scaling up its biologics manufacturing capability and expanding its Irish R&D.


International biotechnology firm Amgen develops therapeutics for serious illnesses. It operates a major facility in Dún Laoghaire with state-of-the-art manufacturing capabilities bulking up the company’s global operations and employing hundreds of people. The company also has an office in Santry.

In 2021, the company invested $100m in a new vial filling line and site infrastructure at its Dún Laoghaire site. In 2022, it agreed to buy Dublin-headquartered biotech company Horizon Therapeutics.


Irish biotech and pharma R&D company APC was founded in 2011 by Dr Mark Barrett and Prof Brian Glennon. In 2021, the company announced plans to invest €25m in a new focus on vaccines that will create 120 jobs.

At the time, APC said that expansion at its headquarters in Dublin will enable the rapid research and manufacture of vaccines, including Covid-19 vaccines, as well as other advanced therapeutics for rare diseases.


US biotech company BioMarin was founded more than 20 years ago and has offices and facilities around the world, including in Dublin and Cork. The company was one of three pharma companies named 2021 Employer of the Year by Generation Apprenticeship.

In 2017, it completed a two-year expansion at its Shanbally site in Cork and in 2019 it opened a new Dublin office to support growth across Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS)

BMS is the product of a 1989 merger that brought together the Squibb corporation and Bristol-Myers.

It has a number of Irish hubs including a large, state-of-the-art biologics facility in Cruiserath in Dublin and a manufacturing facility in Shannon, Co Clare. It employs thousands of people all over the globe, including several hundred in Ireland.

Eli Lilly

Present in Ireland for more than 40 years, US pharma giant Eli Lilly manufacturers treatments in areas such as Alzheimer’s, cancer and diabetes. It’s facility in Cork is now a vast high-technology manufacturing campus that makes active ingredients for Lilly medicines.

In January 2022, the company announced an investment of more than €400m in a new manufacturing facility in Limerick, creating more than 300 full-time jobs. Today (28 March), the pharma giant increased its investment in its new biologics drug substance manufacturing facility in Limerick to almost $1bn.


Pharma company Janssen is a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, which is one of the largest biotechs in the world. Janssen has an office in Dublin and manufacturing facilities in Cork.

Its base in Ringaskiddy began operations in 2005 and it produces biomedicines for the treatment of immune-related diseases and new and innovative cancer treatments. Last year, the company announced 180 new jobs with a €150m expansion at the Cork site.


MSD has a long history in Ireland, with four major sites in Dublin, Carlow, Cork and Tipperary. The company works on treating diseases such as cancer, HIV and Ebola.

The company began construction of a new facility at its Carlow site in August 2022, which will create 100 new jobs there, and in November 2022, it opened a new Dublin biotech facility.


A household name in pharma, Pfizer has several sites across Ireland, having been one of the first pharma companies to set up a base in the country.

In December 2022, the company announced a €1.2bn investment in its Grange Castle manufacturing site in Dublin, which is expected to create up to 500 new jobs. The pharma giant is also due to acquire biotechnology company Seagen for $43bn.


French life sciences company Sanofi produces drugs across a wide range of therapeutic disciplines, treating illnesses such as MS and diabetes.

It operates multiple sites dotted around Ireland and its products are focused on rare inherited disorders, kidney disease, orthopaedics, cancer and diagnostic testing. In 2021, the company announced plans to invest €400m annually in new mRNA vaccine unit.


While its Dunboyne site was purchased by MSD in 2020, Takeda still has a strong presence in Ireland. In December 2020, the company began the expansion of its new oncology production line in Bray, Co Wicklow, which was first set up in the region in 1997.

In 2021, it announced that it will invest €36.4m in its Grange Castle site to support the expansion of the company’s cell therapy production facility, creating 100 jobs in the process. The company was also one of three pharma companies named 2021 Employer of the Year by Generation Apprenticeship.

VLE Therapeutics

A recent addition to the biopharma world, VLE Therapeutics is a company spun out from APC. It was established in 2020 to act as a “medicine accelerator” and will focus on the manufacture of vaccines and advanced therapeutics including cell and gene therapies.

In 2022, the company opened its first “factory of the future”, which it said will reduce the time from medicine discovery to patient delivery. VLE Therapeutics also plans to open an additional 80,000 sq ft manufacturing greenfield site in 2024.

WuXi Biologics

Headquartered in China, WuXi Biologics is an open-access biologics technology platform that offers end-to-end services in order to accelerate the development and manufacturing of biologics. In 2019, work began on a €325m start-of-the-art WuXi Biologics facility in Dundalk.

Also at the NIBRT careers event will be WuXi Vaccines, a subsidiary of WuXi Biologics that focuses on human vaccine discovery and development.

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Jenny Darmody
By Jenny Darmody

Jenny Darmody became the editor of Silicon Republic in 2023, having worked as the deputy editor since February 2020. When she’s not writing about the science and tech industry, she’s writing short stories and attempting novels. She continuously buys more books than she can read in a lifetime and pretty stationery is her kryptonite. She also believes seagulls to be the root of all evil and her baking is the stuff of legends.

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