Merck KGaA (Merck) has announced a €300m ($326.1m) investment to establish a new bioprocessing production centre in Daejeon, South Korea.

The facility is the largest investment by the company’s life science business sector in the Asia-Pacific region and a strategic move to enhance capacities in this rapidly growing market.

The investment will create 300 jobs by the end of 2028.

The 43,000m² Daejeon site will aid biotechnology and pharmaceutical enterprises with process development, clinical research and commercial biologics production.

It will supply critical biotech products including dry powder cell culture media, process liquids and systems for pre-good manufacturing practice small-scale manufacture and sterile sampling for biopharma companies in the region.

The facility will feature a distribution centre, production capabilities and an automated warehouse.

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Merck Korea has 13 sites dedicated to production, research and development, including the M Lab Collaboration Center in Songdo, Incheon.

The new facility in South Korea is a key part of the company’s multi-year investment programme to meet surging global demand for essential drugs.

Merck Life Science CEO Matthias Heinzel stated: “The Asia-Pacific region is home to a large number of institutions that conduct leading-edge and innovative research, manufacturing and services in areas such as biotechnology, mRNA and gene therapy.

“Expanding our presence in the region will bring us even closer to our customers in this evolving and dynamic market. Our goal is to foster deep collaboration to increase the speed in bringing new therapies to patients.”

The company recently reported a decline in financial performance for the fiscal year 2023, with net income attributable to shareholders falling by 15.1% to €2.82bn, compared to €3.326bn in 2022.