Hovione adds API capacity with purchase of Pfizer's Loughbeg facility

Hovione, a Portuguese developer of pharmaceutical ingredients, is to acquire Pfizer's Loughbeg Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) site in Cork, Ireland.

Hovione buys Pfizer's Loughbeg API facility

Hovione, a Portuguese developer of pharmaceutical ingredients, is to acquire Pfizer's Loughbeg Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) site in Cork, Ireland.

The site has had a number of owners since 1984, including Angus Fine Chemicals, Hickson & Welch, Warner Lambert and Pfizer. Since 1998 Pfizer has invested several hundred million dollars in plant and equipment at the site.

The site manufactures intermediates for Lipitor active pharmaceutical ingredient.

The terms of the transaction were not disclosed but Hovione will continue to provide manufacturing services for Pfizer. The deal will be completed by April 2009.

Hovione Cork will employ 70-80 staff and over the next two years the company will transfer products from Loures, Portugal to Cork.

The Cork plant will add 427m³ of capacity to Hovione's 810m³, of which 400m³ are in Portugal and the remainder in China. As well as addressing hydrogenation and low temperature chemistry, it also provides Hovione with a new Euro 70m capability to produce spray-dried formulations.

Guy Villax, chief executive of Novione, said: ""The Cork site, the New Jersey technology transfer centre, Loures in Portugal and Taizhou and Macau in China now provide Hovione with the right range of capabilities in the correct geographies. Every site meets FDA requirements for APIs but every site is suited to a different and well-defined mission."

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