Almac announce £200 million investment plan after record year

Craigavon-based pharma giant Almac is to invest £200 million in expanding its business over the next three years.

PHARMACEUTICALS group Almac is to invest £200 million in a massive global capital programme over the next three years to meet growing demand for its business.

The Craigavon-based firm, which has today reported its highest ever revenue, profit and employee numbers, said the year ending September 30 2021 was its best on record.

The group saw turnover grow by £58 million (8.6 per cent) to £735m in 2021, with pre-tax profits rising by 27.1 per cent to £81m.

The company, which develops its own drugs and carries out manufacturing and testing for major global players, has created almost 1,000 jobs since October 2020.

It now employs around 6,500 people worldwide, with plans to grow to 8,000 over the next three years.

Some 1,000 of the new jobs are being created in Northern Ireland as part of an ongoing recruitment drive announced in November.

Almac said it was involved in the development of over 300 life-saving drugs spanning more than 20 therapeutic areas over the year to September 2021.

It said the group was also instrumental in supporting over 200 research projects for Covid-19 vaccines and treatments.

Almac has been among the local manufacturers to actively promote its dual access to EU and UK markets under the Northern Ireland Protocol.

Styled as ‘The Almac Advantage’, the group in particular has promoted itself as a ‘one stop shop’ for UK and EU clinical trial support and testing.

The group, which is owned by the charitable trust named for its founder, Sir Allen McClay, maintains a long-held policy of reinvesting 100 per cent of group profits back into the business.

With business and profits booming, the group has committed to pumping £200m into further expansion to meet the increased demand from its clients.

Almac said the funds will be invested in existing locations in Northern Ireland, as well as sites in the UK, Europe, North America and Asia.

The group’s Craigavon campus is currently undergoing a multimillion investment programme.

Almac said another £20m will be invested in enhancing its headquarters, including two purpose-built catering hubs, featuring restaurants, mixed used dining and working areas, covered outdoor eating, breakout spaces and seating for almost 1000 people at any one time.

Subject to planning approvals, the hubs are expected to be completed in early 2023.

Other developments currently under construction include a new multi-level car park, while provisional plans are being drafted for a second expansion phase to include a dedicated wellness centre, an employee gym, walking track around the campus and a third catering facility.

The group’s chief executive, Alan Armstrong, said: “I am hugely proud of our achievements in the last financial year.

“I am incredibly grateful to every one of our employees for their part in delivering these outstanding results as we continue our vital work developing life-saving and life-enhancing medicines for our clients and patients.

“Almac is committed to re-investing all our profit back into the business to ensure we are market leading for clients and offer the best possible work environment for our people,” he said.

“For our clients, we are investing £200m on expansion to ensure we remain the global leaders in our industry and give them, and ultimately patients across the world who receive benefit from these therapeutics, the best possible offering from Almac.

“For our employees, we have already introduced a number of new measures; a bonus for all, reduced working hours, flexible and hybrid working where applicable.

“We are also committed to providing our employees with the best possible working environment and today’s Craigavon campus expansion announcement underlines our commitment.”

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