SAN FRANCISCO, CA and RALEIGH, N.C. – Audentes Therapeutics, an Astellas company focused on developing innovative AAV-based genetic medicines, announced today that it plans to invest $109 million to build a new 135,000 square foot, state-of-the-art gene therapy manufacturing facility in Sanford, North Carolina. The initial phase of the capital investment is planned to occur over approximately 18 months, and the plant is expected to be operational in 2021. The remaining investment will take place over two additional planned expansion phases. The company plans to create over 200 new jobs in Lee County.
“Our investment in large-scale manufacturing has always been a cornerstone of our strategy to develop and ultimately deliver our important genetic medicines to patients as rapidly as possible. This new facility in Sanford will support the next phase of our growth as we establish a robust, global supply chain and expand our therapeutic and geographic scope as a part of the Astellas group of companies,” stated Natalie Holles, President and Chief Executive Officer of Audentes. “We are excited to join the vibrant biopharmaceutical research and manufacturing community that the state of North Carolina has established.”
“With our powerhouse research centers and highly-skilled workforce, biotech pioneers recognize North Carolina’s role as a leader in the life sciences,” said North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper. “Lee County is a perfect fit for Audentes as they seek to become a global leader in genetic medicines.”
“Audentes Therapeutics is joining one of the nation’s top life science clusters,” said North Carolina Commerce Secretary Anthony M. Copeland. “North Carolina has the largest biomanufacturing workforce in the nation and a growing concentration of gene therapy scientists, researchers and workers.”
The North Carolina Department of Commerce led the state’s support for the company’s decision. In addition to N.C. Commerce and the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, other key partners in the project include the North Carolina General Assembly, North Carolina Community College System, Lee County, Sanford Area Growth Alliance, City of Sanford, and North Carolina Biotechnology Center.
About Audentes Therapeutics, Inc., an Astellas company
Audentes Therapeutics, Inc., an Astellas company, is a leading AAV-based genetic medicines company focused on developing and commercializing innovative therapies that can offer transformative benefits to patients. In addition to its gene therapy portfolio targeting serious rare neuromuscular diseases, Audentes is leveraging Astellas’ global resources, industry leadership in immune biology, and deep scientific expertise to expand its reach and deliver valuable new genetic medicines to patients around the world. For more information regarding Audentes, please visit: www.audentestx.com.
About Astellas Pharma Inc.
Astellas Pharma Inc., based in Tokyo, Japan, is a company dedicated to improving the health of people around the world through the provision of innovative and reliable pharmaceutical products. For more information, please visit Astellas’ website at https://www.astellas.com/en.
February 18, 2020