Reflecting the ongoing manufacturing restructuring in the bio/pharmaceutical industry, Amgen and sanofi-aventis plan to sell manufacturing facilities to contract manufacturers. Amgen signed an agreement with Boehringer Ingelheim (BI), under which BI will acquire Amgen’s rights in and substantially all assets at Amgen’s Fremont, California, development and manufacturing facility. The transaction has been approved by the board of directors of each company and is expected to close in March 2011. Amgen’s Fremont facility currently employs approximately 360 employees and includes a 100,000-ft2 manufacturing facility, pilot plant, and process-development laboratories.
“The technological expertise at Fremont and the state-of-the-art facility will enable us to further strengthen our global contract manufacturing business, including new biological entity process development and manufacturing efforts,” said Wolfram Carius, member of BI’s board of managing directors, in a Jan. 24, 2011, Amgen press release.
BI has been a contract manufacturer for Amgen for more than 10 years. Amgen obtained the Fremont facility through its 2006 acquisition of the biopharmaceutical company Abgenix. Amgen will continue to have a presence in the San Francisco Bay area through its South San Francisco facility, one of the company’s research centers.
sanofi-aventis divests Madrid facility
In other news, sanofi-aventis agreed to sell its plant at Avenida de Leganes in Alcorcon-Madrid, Spain, to the contract development and manufacturing organization Famar. All employees of the plant will be transferred. The plant produces solid and sterile dosage forms, including freeze-dried products.
Under the deal, which is expected to close in the second quarter of 2011, sanofi-aventis will continue to source certain products from the site under a supply agreement with Famar, which also will also develop the plant for external manufacturing activities. Famar will expand the plant’s sterile capacities and offerings. Famar had earlier acquired a sanofi plant in L’Aigle, France, in 2001.