The firm said it would base its Life Science division’s first US headquarters in Marlborough, Massachusetts this week, explaining that it chose the town – which is home to its Xcellerex bioreactor business – because of its proximity to potential customers and employees.
Spokesman Ben Fox told BioPharma-Reporter.com “We chose Marlborough to be close to industry-leading talent, customers, and world-class academic and medical institutions across all the industry sectors we serve, from biotech and pharma, to diagnostics and medical devices.”
At present the Life Science business is split between operations in New Jersey, a manufacturing unit in Westborough and the Xcellerex facility in Marlborough that GE Healthcare gained as a result of the 2012 takeover.
Fox told us: “There is no current plan to move roles from our other sites outside of our New Jersey and Marlborough, MA population,” adding that “we will locate any new or backfilled roles in whatever location makes the most sense.”
"While we will transition away from the Piscataway, NJ, site, a number of remote and field based Life Sciences roles will stay in New Jersey, and we have a small facility in South Plainfield with roughly 40 employees that will remain in the state.”
He also confirmed that GE has no plans to move its Hyclone culture media and sera units to the Marlborough site, explaining that “The newly acquired Thermo Fisher Scientific business will continue to operate in their current facilities [in Utah and Colorado].”
The new HQ, which is due to be operational in 2015 and expected to create 220 jobs, will house GE Healthcare’s cell and protein research units, its discovery services business and – according to Fox – “support large-scale manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals.”
The likely increase in traffic caused by the broad range of activities at the site will not be a problem for Marlborough according to Chamber of Commerce president, Susanne Morreale Leeber, who told us the town is at the “crossroads of New England.”
“The Marlborough Regional Chamber of Commerce promotes this region by showing that this is ‘Where All New England Connects’, not only because of the intersection of Mass Pike, Route 495, Route 20 and Route 9, but they can connect to other life science companies, employee services and many other local businesses.”
She added that: “As far as whether this community is up to the increased transportation demands, this is no problem because of the roadway infrastructure as well as, there are many transportation options available. The chamber’s Transportation management Association has many programs available from carpooling to a shuttle service.”