Sanofi and Lonza announced today that they have entered into a strategic partnership to build and operate a large-scale mammalian cell culture facility for monoclonal antibody production in Visp, Switzerland. The strategic partnership in the form of a joint venture combines the strong biologics development pipeline of Sanofi with the expertise of Lonza to design, construct, start-up and operate a state-of-the-art large-scale mammalian cell culture facility. The initial investment will be around CHF 290 million (€ 270 million), to be split equally between each company. highly experienced partner in this field and the capabilities which this joint venture will create are critical to meeting our patients’ needs for these important therapies.”
The partnership provides both Sanofi and Lonza with substantial flexibility in an innovative setup:
- Each party will share the available capacity in line with their equity shareholding in the joint venture.
- Sanofi will have additional access to bio-manufacturing capacity to support increasing demands for their portfolio of biologic therapeutic products, should they require it.
- Lonza will be free to market their share of capacity, if not required by Sanofi, and will also market unused Sanofi capacity, where available.
- Lonza will construct the facility and will support the joint venture in its operations of the facility.
The strategic partnership enables Sanofi to react quickly to fluctuations in demand in a short timeframe, reinforcing their capability to launch high-quality, next generation biologic medicines and ensure consistent access for patients. It also provides Lonza with needed capacities to respond to growing manufacturing demands for large-scale mammalian cell culture based therapeutic proteins, therefore allowing Lonza to better serve its customers. By adding flexibility in this way, this model will help to optimize biologics production capacity across the whole industry.