Novartis announces USD 1 billion investment to build largest pharmaceutical R&D institute in China

Additional USD 250 million invested in advanced technical R&D and manufacturing facility opening in Changshu, furthering economic development of Jiangsu province and Suzhou city

04-Nov-2009 - China

Novartis announced a USD 1 billion investment over the next five years, increasing R&D activities in China and confirming Novartis' long term commitment to China's further economic development, health reform and improving the health care of the Chinese people. The Novartis investment will include a significant expansion of The Novartis Institute of BioMedical Research (CNIBR) in Shanghai.

"We are confident that our expanded investment in R&D will result in innovative therapies for patients in China and other countries nurtured by the growing scientific excellence in China." said Dr Daniel Vasella, Chairman and CEO of Novartis. "We are also pleased to contribute to the Shanghai government's aim to establish the city as the premiere R&D center for China's bio-medicine industry by 2012, as Novartis is committed to investing to further the Chinese government's strategy for stimulating economic growth, stability and enhancing the livelihood of the Chinese people."

Novartis investments will expand The Novartis Institute for BioMedical Research in Shanghai (CNIBR) which is currently located in Zhangjiang High-tech Park. The Institute specializes in basic research and development of new drugs including small molecule and biological medicines to treat diseases that are highly prevalent in China. To allow for this large expansion, the BioMedical Research Institute will relocate to a new state of the art campus in Shanghai. Its activities are expected to span work in analytics and biomarkers, in vivo pharmacology, protein production, characterization and scale-up screening and chemistry and proteomics, genomics and imaging. CNIBR is expected to extend and increase its collaborations with institutions in China and is committed to cultivating local R&D talent, sharing the world-leading development technology platform of Novartis and years of drug development experience. CNIBR is expected to be the third largest R&D center for Novartis, after the R&D center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA and the facility at the Novartis headquarters in Basel, Switzerland, and to become the largest comprehensive R&D center in China. Estimates are that the number of R&D associate positions will increase from 160 today to about 1,000.

Novartis also announced that it has invested USD 250 million in a new global technical center which is opening in Changshu, focused on technical research, development and manufacturing activities of APIs (active pharmaceutical ingredients). The synergies gained from the co-location of both technical R&D and manufacturing enable significant pharmaceutical process improvements and operational efficiencies. The number of high quality jobs at the new center is projected to nearly double, and the facility is expected to be a critical part of the global production and supply chain network.

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