Genzyme began work on the €250m production plant in January to add capacity to support the long-term growth of Myozyme (alglucosidase alfa). Having previously performed work for Sanofi, Genzyme’s new owner, Bilfinger Berger Industrial Services (BIS) has picked up the Geel deal.
“We are very pleased that we were able to prevail over renowned peers. The project in Belgium will allow us to additionally extend our international activities”, said Ludwig Paradeiser, general manager of BIS Industrietechnik Salzburg.
BIS is supporting construction of the plant by taking responsibility for apparatus assembly and the piping systems. The PM Group is the general architect for the plant and selected BIS for the work after the companies collaborated on a Sanofi plant last year.
Sanofi contracted the PM Group to do engineering design for its €200m cell culture plant in Vitry-sur-Seine, near Paris, France. BIS installed tanks, pumps, heat exchangers and filters at the plant and will now do work for Genzyme, which Sanofi acquired in April.
Genzyme is building the plant, which consists of two 4,000L bioreactors for producing Myozyme, as part of efforts to increase capacity four-fold. By expanding at Geel Genzyme expects to add 150 staff, bringing total employment at the site up to 600.
BIS is targeting the biopharmaceutical industry as a growth sector and has made acquisitions to strengthen its position. Winning business from Sanofi and Genzyme furthers this strategy.
“Projects attracting a great deal of international attention such as the recent one in Paris and now also in Belgium confirm the reputation which BIS has acquired in the [biopharm] segment”, said Joachim Kreysing, executive vice president of the BIS Group.
In August 2010 BIS also inked a five-year, €50m maintenance services and plant support deal with Switzerland-based Siegfried AG. As part of the deal BIS took on 50 Siegfried employees.