MilliporeSigma’s Life Science Campus, Burlington, Massachusetts, United States of America
MilliporeSigma, the life sciences division of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany (Merck), is constructing a world-class life science hub in Burlington, Massachusetts, US. The $115m project was announced in July 2016 and is slated for completion in 2017.
The new facility will replace MilliporeSigma's existing facility in Billerica, Massachusetts. It will enable both its employees and customers to work in a sustainable and collaborative working environment.
All 850 employees of the Billerica facility will be relocated to the Burlington campus.
Details of the Burlington facility
The 280,000ft² Burlington campus will be spread over five storeys. It will include Merck's trademarked collaboration laboratory named M Lab™ Collaboration Center, which will be spread across 15,000ft² as an open two-storey section of the first floor.
M Lab™ is a shared laboratory in which customers work alongside Merck's scientists and engineers in a non-GMP environment to solve major biomanufacturing challenges.
The centre will provide services such as application and technology demonstrations, optimisation and scale-up of complex applications, development of optimised protocols and procedures, and troubleshooting unit operations. It will also provide hands-on training, including formal bioprocess educational courses, webinars, and instructional videos and troubleshooting guides.
Other M Lab™ centres are located in Brazil, China, France, India, Singapore and South Korea. The Burlington campus will replace the existing centre at the Billerica facility.
The Burlington facility will also include office space featuring flexible workspaces, labs, and a customer service and call centre. Training, display, storage and instrument repair rooms are also provided in the facility.
The Burlington campus will be LEED-certified and also include 70,000ft² of space for future expansion.
Incentives for the life science campus
The Burlington project was approved under the MassWorks Infrastructure Program by the City of Massachusetts. The programme provides funding for projects that support economic development and job creation.
Merck's project is being provided with a 15% exemption on property taxes for a period of 15 years.
Burlington campus location
MilliporeSigma is one of many biopharmaceutical companies setting up operations in Massachusetts and nearby areas. With the presence of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Harvard University and other academic institutions, the region is known to be one of the top biotech hubs in the world for biopharmaceutical research and development (R&D).
Biopharmaceutical companies such as Bayer and Bristol-Myers Squibb have also set up innovation centres and shared laboratories similar to the M Lab™ centre in Massachusetts to accelerate their R&D activities.
The Gutierrez Company based in Burlington has been contracted to build the new facility.
Marketing commentary on Merck and MilliporeSigma
Merck was founded as a family-owned business in 1668. Operating as MilliporeSigma in the US and Canada, the company's life sciences division, includes 65 manufacturing sites worldwide.
The life sciences division provides products and services based on three business areas, including process solutions, research solutions and applied solutions. The combined portfolio of the division includes more than 300,000 products.
Some of the process solutions provided by the division include single-use manufacturing, pharmaceutical raw materials, and engineering and validation services. Research solutions include bioscience reagents, specialty chemicals, and lab separation tools. Applied solutions include lab water systems, critical raw materials, analytical reagents, and point-of-use devices.