The plant – on a 20 acre site near drug manufacturing hub Wuxi – offers packaging services for a range of products and is intended to be a distribution centre for Sigma Aldrich's activities in China and across the entire Asia-Pacific region.
Eric Green VP and managing director of international operations at Sigma Aldrich told Outsourcing-pharm.com the investment is a continuation of the firm's efforts to grow its business in the region but with shorter supply chains.
“Since 2006, we have been building a strong local presence in China that relied on an extensive import supply chain model dependent upon our US and European operations.
“The investment we’ve made in Wuxi enables us to broaden our product portfolio and further supports our localization strategy. These investments will improve service to our customers in Asia-Pacific.”
He explained that packaging operations at the plant have been designed to handle the wide range of hazardous compounds used by both Sigma Aldrich's research materials business and by the non-GMP production unit of its fine chemicals division, SAFC
The facility will also house Sigma Aldrich's regional analytical services, however - as Green explained - these will be focused on the food safety and environmental testing customer segment.
‘Localization’ has been a focus in recent times according to Green, who said that: “The emerging markets remain robust and attractive geographies due to the continued growth in GDP, increased government funding for R&D and infrastructure investments being made by our global customers."