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News : Innovation Last Updated: Mar 16, 2011 - 5:16 PM

Plans announced for 282 new jobs at planned pharmaceutical research centre in Tralee
By Finfacts Team
Mar 16, 2011 - 5:02 PM

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Plans were announced today for up 282 new jobs to be created at a research centre that is to be built by a a consortium of three pharmaceutical firms in Tralee, Co Kerry.

Pharmaceutical company Pharmadel, which is based in Cork, announced last September, plans to create more than 4,500 pharmaceutical research jobs in Co Kerry.

Pharmadel announced that up to 400 jobs would be created in advance of the opening, with more than 4,500 jobs envisaged when the centre is operational.

The company was in talks with the Saudi Arabian government about funding the cost of the €4.7bn project, saying that funding from the Irish Government will not be sought.

Today's announced jobs are being created as part of phase one of the development of a Global Pharmaceutical Centre of Excellence (GPCE) in Tralee.

The consortium includes the International Prevention Research Institute (iPRI), Global Research Services (GRS) and Optivia Biotechnology who have primarily research and development roles and will come on stream over the next fifteen months. Recruitment for the new positions is expected to begin in May.

The promoters of the centre are seeking to establish a campus of over fifty different small to medium sized pharmaceutical companies in the town and it is hoped that up over 4,500 people could be working at the facility within the next four years.

The project is being supported by a board which is chaired by Pharmadel's chief executive Pat Barry and includes former EU Commissioner, David Byrne, Anglo Irish Bank chairman Alan Dukes and founding president of the University of Limerick, Dr Edward Walsh.

“We’re delighted to see this first announcement of jobs by three well-respected organisations, part of on-going development of the Global Pharmaceutical Centre of Excellence. We promised we’d deliver 300 jobs in the first phase, so this is a very good milestone,” said Rory Doyle, chief executive of the proposed centre, and a senior executive with the Cork-based drug firm Pharmadel.

The new jobs will initially be established by the three organisations at the Centrepoint development in Tralee, but a 32-acre site at the Kerry Technology Park has been identified for the development of the overall campus for which a planning application will be submitted in May.

The centre's promoters say funding for the initial development has already been secured; and talks are on further investment are continuing with a number of sovereign wealth funds, including a group of Saudi investors.

The iPRI is an independent research organisation, which seeks to work towards the improvement of health worldwide by identifying critical issues in disease determination and prevention. It is currently based in Lyon, France.

GRS is a US-based privately-owned clinical research organisation providing services to pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device companies and US-based Optivia Biotechnology provides services and products to help companies to develop new drugs.

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