Grifols Growing Again in Clayton with $210M in New Manufacturing Facilities

Grifols is adding manufacturing capacity to its 233-acre Clayton campus.
Grifols is adding manufacturing capacity to its 233-acre Clayton campus.
-- Grifols photo

Grifols, already the largest private employer in Johnston County, is about to get even bigger.

The Spanish biotherapeutics company is investing $210 million in two new facilities at its manufacturing campus in Clayton to help meet the growing demand for plasma-derived medicines.

The company broke ground this month for a $120 million purification and filling facility that will mainly be used for the production of immunoglobulin and factor VIII products. Immunoglobulin is used to treat various autoimmune, infectious and other diseases, and factor VIII is used to treat the bleeding disorder hemophilia A.

The three-story, 150,000-square-foot facility, scheduled to begin operating in 2022, will also support the Clayton site’s $400 million plasma-fractionation plant that opened in 2014.

“The new purification and filling facility is crucial to Grifols’ expansion plans at the Clayton site,” Juan Antonio Garcia Diaz, president of Grifols Therapeutics, said in a news release. “We strive to meet the needs and have the trust of patients around the world, so investing in a facility that will help ensure the quality and safety of our products is a top priority.”

Expansion includes $90M fractionation facility

Construction of a $90 million fractionation facility is also under way. Scheduled to open in 2021, the facility will add 6 million liters of capacity per year.

Plasma, the water portion of blood, is rich in proteins, some of which have therapeutic value. Fractionation separates proteins so they can be purified and sterilized for use in medicines that restore or replace missing proteins.

Grifols logoGrifols’ medicines are used to treat a wide range of diseases including hemophilia, emphysema, acute liver failure, hepatitis A and immunodeficiency disorders.

Grifols’ two new facilities are the latest of several expansions that are making the Clayton site one of the largest plasma-manufacturing plants in the world.

In December 2017, Grifols tripled the size of its footprint there by purchasing 467 acres of land for future expansion. In July 2017, the company opened a 112,000-square-foot office building for more than 400 employees.

Came to NC in 2011 with Talecris purchase

Grifols established its presence in North Carolina in June 2011 when it acquired Talecris Biotherapeutics Holdings Corp. for $3.4 billion.

Close to 2,500 people work for Grifols throughout North Carolina. This includes about 1,650 people at the Clayton campus, 500 at corporate offices in the Research Triangle Park, and 200 others, mostly at plasma-collection centers across the state.

Grifols expects to hire about 250 new employees in Clayton over the next dozen years, the company said.

Grifols has partnered with Johnston Community College on workforce training and will participate in a groundbreaking ceremony in April for a new Workforce Development Center at the college. The Center is a 30,000-square-foot educational and technical skills training facility with a focus on life sciences programming, business training and workforce development in biotechnology and other sciences.

Grifols has 18,300 employees in 30 countries

Headquartered in Barcelona, Spain, Grifols has 18,300 employees in 30 countries.

Its three main divisions -- Bioscience, Diagnostic and Hospital -- develop, produce and market products and services that are available in more than 100 countries.

With a network of 190 plasma donation centers, Grifols is a major producer of plasma-derived medicines used to treat rare, chronic and life-threatening conditions.

In 2017, its global sales exceeded 4.3 billion euros.

Barry Teater, NCBiotech Writer
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