Invest Puerto Rico elevates the Island’s role as a global bioscience R&D and manufacturing hub attracting two major life-critical investments, $228M in new activity
– CytoImmune Therapeutics and Biosimilar Sciences US will soon call Puerto Rico home and engage in cancer immunotherapy solutions and a COVID-19 vaccine, respectively
– Both initiatives represent a combined investment of approximately $228 million and the creation of 400 jobs
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico, Feb. 3, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — In line with its mission of promoting investment and economic development in the Island, economic development organization Invest Puerto Rico (“InvestPR”), revealed two major successes for its bioscience sector. CytoImmune Therapeutics, Inc. and Biosimilar Solutions, LLC, each committed to establishing operations on the Island to develop their biotechnology products.
The relocations are a result of InvestPR’s strategic plan with support from BiosciencesCorp Puerto Rico for strengthening Puerto Rico’s bioscience sector. Puerto Rico has a storied past spanning six decades of excellence. Eli Lilly opened its first plant on the Island in 1960. The majority of the top 20 pharmaceutical companies, including Abbvie, Abbott Laboratories, Amgen, AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb, GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Novartis, Pfizer and Wyeth operate facilities in Puerto Rico. The Island, which boasts a staggering $50 billion+ in annual pharmaceutical industry production, has 100+ FDA-approved pharmaceutical and bioscience plants, and is the U.S.’s largest pharmaceutical manufacturing region, more than the next several states combined. Biosimilar’s innovations are focused on biotech products including a COVID-19 vaccine (more details below) while CytoImmune Therapeutics specializes in cancer immunotherapy treatments.
“This announcement is a clear indication that Puerto Rico’s business ecosystem is primed to support bioscience innovation, manufacturing, and distribution on a global scale. It also shows that this sector is crucial to the Island’s path to economic transformation since biotechnology start-ups can provide hundreds of jobs upon a successful FDA approval. We proudly welcome CytoImmune and Biosimilar to Puerto Rico and reiterate our commitment to helping them ensure success and a healthy ROI,” said Rodrick Miller, CEO of InvestPR.
Leveraging the Puerto Rico Incentives Code (Act 60) and other assets to set up Puerto Rico operations, both companies will perform novel biologics and cell therapy research and development. Both initiatives represent a combined investment of approximately $228 million and the creation of 400 jobs.
Governor of Puerto Rico Pedro R. Pierluisi stated, “Once again Puerto Rico demonstrates that we have the talent, resources, and capabilities of a global leader in manufacturing in the Bioscience sector. Thanks to the work of Invest Puerto Rico and the Department of Economic Development and Commerce, an increasing number of companies are leveraging the Island’s value proposition to boost their operations, which in turn leads to increased private investment, job creation, and a positive return on investment for all. Furthermore, Puerto Rico is ready to serve our nation by providing a proven ecosystem for reshoring to bring back manufacturing to U.S. soil and ensuring our critical supply chain.”
Biosimilar Sciences will establish a state-of-the-art biotech facility in Aguadilla with a $200 million investment in machinery and equipment. It will develop a series of biosimilar products, including a COVID-19 vaccine, new cell and gene therapy, biologics, clinical studies, and other recombinant biotechnologies. Biosimilar’s current product portfolio has an approximate market value of $30 billion.
CytoImmune will settle in Toa Baja with a total $28 million investment including machinery and equipment and expects to hire up to 100 highly remunerated professionals. The company will be developing and marketing novel cancer immunotherapy products that use the patient’s own immune system to eliminate cancer cells. Cytolmmune currently develops proprietary Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR) engineered T cells (CAR-T) technology, as well as an approach for human natural killer (NK) cell immunotherapy that involves a CAR NK cell.
“We are excited to get to work in Puerto Rico, which supports our mission to make biologics affordable, accessible, and with uncompromising quality. There is no doubt about the Island’s capabilities in the bioscience sector and we look forward to doing great things that help save lives. All of the stakeholders in Puerto Rico who helped make our presence here possible have been supportive, a reflection of the Island’s commitment to performing on the highest level in terms of life science manufacturing and business development,” said Robert Salcedo, cofounder and CEO of BioSimilar.
Rich Santulli, CytoImmune Chairman and CEO noted, “Puerto Rico has a proven history in the life science sector and a deep talent pool. It is plain to see that the environment in Puerto Rico is ideal for the development of our immunotherapies. “Puerto Rico’s recently designated Secretary of the Department of Economic Development and Commerce, Manuel Cidre Miranda, reiterated that “Puerto Rico continues to make significant progress in its path to economic transformation. Per our strategic plan, we continue to build on the Island’s legacy in the bioscience sector by attracting top-tier manufacturers that are innovating on a large scale. Our value proposition for investment in this area supports the activities of all types of companies, enabling them with our human capital, infrastructure and favorable business climate.”
About INVEST PUERTO RICO
Invest Puerto Rico is the economic development organization created by law with the purpose of promoting Puerto Rico abroad as a competitive jurisdiction for investment, focused on attracting new businesses and capital to foster economic growth on the Island. Our vision is to be an entity focused on results, that accelerates Puerto Rico’s transformation and generates more and better jobs on the island.
About Biosimilar Solutions, Inc.
Biosimilar Solutions, Inc. is a leading global biosimilar company committed to improving patient lives by expanding access to life-changing biologic medicines.
About CytoImmune Therapeutics, Inc.
CytoImmune Therapeutics was founded on the proprietary Natural Killer (NK) cell expansion technology pioneered by Michael Caligiuri and Jianhu Yu. The company is focused on expanding its manufacturing technologies to enable numerous clinical studies across various cancers.
About Biosciences Corp, LLC
Biosciences Corp is a consulting company based in San Ramon, California, focused on Biologics, Gene and Cell Therapy strategy, Regulatory, Facility Design, and Process Development supporting start-ups to commercialization.
SOURCE: Invest Puerto Rico