Aspen Pharma Opens $80-Million High-Potency Manufacturing Facility
Aspen Pharmacare, a KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa-headquartered pharmaceutical company, has opened a 1-billion rand ($80-million) high-containment drug-product manufacturing facility in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
The 23,000-square-meter facility has been audited by the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority and German regulatory authorities, both of which have granted the requested approval. At full capacity, the high-containment facility is expected to produce approximately 3.6 billion tablets annually and package some 3 million bottles per month.
Initial production in this facility is planned for Alkeran (melphalan), a multiple myeloma and ovarian cancer drug; Leukeran (chlorambucil), a leukemia drug; Purinethol (mercaptopurine), a leukemia drug; Imuran (azathioprine), a drug to prevent organ tissue rejection in liver and kidney transplants as well as treatment of certain autoimmune diseases; and benztropine, a drug to treat Parkinson’s disease.
Products from the facility will be for export markets. “With this new facility, it is anticipated that around 95% of these new products are to be exported [to] target markets in Latin America, Europe, Asia and Africa with the first exports expected to Europe as the first regulatory approvals were from Europe,” South Africa’s Minister of Trade and Industry Dr. Rob Davies in a May 7, 2018 Aspen Pharmacare statement.
Aspen’s operations in the Eastern Cape, South Africa employ over 2,500 people of which 2,000 are at the Port Elizabeth site. The high-containment facility, together with a new sterile facility being built at the same site, will provide for some 500 additional jobs, according to Aspen.
Aspen is in the process of establishing a training academy to give its employees the opportunity to attain national accredited qualifications in pharmaceutical manufacture.
Source: Aspen Pharmacare