USA's Biogen Idec, one of the world's largest biotech companies headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has completed building the first major part of its international production plant in Hillerød, north of Copenhagen, writes financial daily newspaper Børsen. The Danish architect firm Vilhelm Lauritzen Arkitekter has initiated the planning of the second part of the construction, comprising a large scale manufacturing building, a warehouse and a laboratory, which are slated for completion in 2009.
Earlier this year, Biogen Idec moved its packaging, labelling and distribution of drugs for the world market from the Dutch city of Hoofddorp to Hillerød. The laboratory handling quality control has also been moved to Hillerød. The new facility supplies products for 90 countries worldwide.
As previously reported on this website, the story of Biogen and the town of Hillerød started in 2000, when the biotech company planned to establish a large-scale manufacturing plant in Europe. Looking at various opportunities for where to place the plant, the choice came down to two locations, either in Ireland or Denmark.
"I am Irish, so it was an interesting exercise for me to be part of taking that decision. But after many months of thorough analysis, we chose Denmark, and regardless of whether you are Irish, Danish or American, there is no doubt that it was the right business decision. I also think the last seven years have showed this to be true," Biogen Idec MD Paul Coleman said in September to Pharnia.
Biogen Idec is currently employing approx. 200 people at its Hillerød facility, a figure which is expected to grow to 400 in 2009. Since 2001, the US firm has invested DKK 3 bn (USD 0.6 bn) in its new facility.