Diabetes is a key focus for the Big Pharma company.
Pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly has announced plans to invest $850 million in its U.S. operations in 2017, with diabetes a particular focus. The plans were revealed during a special event at the Lilly Technology Center at Indianapolis, where the company also called for “a more favorable tax environment” to support further boosts to domestic manufacturing.
“Our future at Lilly is bright, as we're on a path to launch 20 new products in a ten-year time frame,” said President and CEO David Ricks. “As we have for our entire 140-year history, we continue to see Indiana and the United States as attractive places to research and make the medicines that we sell around the world.”
The investment covers research laboratories, manufacturing sites and general and administrative areas. Among the highlights are a $85 million expansion of Lilly’s Trulicity (dulaglutide) device assembly operations, on top of the official dedication during the event of a $140 million insulin cartridge production facility.
Lilly has spent over $1.1 billion over the past five years on the manufacture of diabetes products. There have been upgrades to existing facilities, new capacities and new capabilities based on its own pipeline and the rapid growth of the condition, which now affects about 30 million people in the U.S. and over 400 million worldwide. The company has produced insulin for some 90 years.
Other parts of the investment will be focused on pipeline products in therapies including cancer and pain, as well as other unmet medical needs. According to Ricks, both existing and newly initiated projects will be funded, including some in Indianapolis
Between 2012 and 2016, Lilly increased its U.S manufacturing workforce by more than 1,000 employees to 6,000, of which 400 were added in Indianapolis. During that time, the investment has sustained an average of 500 construction jobs and nearly 1,000 at peak. This will continue with the ongoing work at the Lilly Technology Center.