Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced that it will close its manufacturing plant in Adelaide, Australia by the end of 2021. The announcement came despite plans being announced less than 12 months ago to expand the site into a “state-of-the-art” facility.
The Thebarton site was established in 2003 and joined the Pfizer network after the acquisition of Hospira. It currently employs 89 workers and produces a drug called pegfilgrastim. The popular drug is used to prevent infection in patients undergoing chemotherapy treatment and is exported worldwide. Having acquired the factory in 2015, Pfizer announced plans to expand the site at a cost of $21 million in March 2016. At the time of the purchase, the South Australian Government welcomed the acquisition as a “wonderful sign” of the long-term commitment to drug manufacturing. Pfizer stated the Thebarton factory would generate $380 million to the South Australian economy over the following seven years.
The multinational has now stated that it intends to consolidate its manufacturing of drugs in fewer locations.
The company said in a statement “This has been a difficult decision, and was based on a number of factors including the existing capacity within Pfizer’s global manufacturing network and the efficiency of consolidating manufacturing to fewer locations.”
A Spokesman said: “For now the focus is on colleagues impacted by this decision and providing access to support services for them and, in due course, exploring opportunities for redeployment.”
The US drugs giant said it would seek to redeploy its Adelaide employees in other locations. No time table has been set just yet.
The close of play on Friday saw Pfizer Inc (NYSE: PFE) close down 0.03 cents, or 0.09% at $32.35.