$125M pharma manufacturing plant coming to Petersburg
Civica will manufacture COVID-19 medicines, partnering with Richmond's Phlow Corp.
Utah-based pharmaceutical manufacturer Civica Inc. plans to invest $124.5 million to establish its North American manufacturing headquarters operation in Petersburg, creating 186 jobs and manufacturing injectable medicines for the treatment of COVID-19, the governor’s office announced Thursday.
A nonprofit generic drug company, Civica was established in 2018 by a group of U.S. health systems and philanthropic organizations to address chronic generic drug shortages and related price spikes. More than 50 health systems are Civica members.
Civica plans to construct a 120,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Petersburg, where it will manufacture vials and syringes of injectable medicines used for COVID- 19 patient care, emergency rooms and surgeries, as well as the treatment of serious infections and hypertension.
The new plant is part of a larger federal strategy to establish an American manufacturing hub and supply chain for generic medicines and pharmaceutical ingredients needed to treat COVID-19 that are now sourced mostly from China and India.
In May 2020 Richmond-based Phlow Corp. was awarded a $354 million, four-year federal contract from the U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) to produce the essential medications using advanced manufacturing processes from the Medicines for All Institute based at Virginia Commonwealth University’s College of Engineering.
Civica is a partner in a federally-funded partnership with Phlow, Medicines for All Institute and AMPAC Fine Chemicals, a California-based pharmaceutical manufacturer with a facility in Petersburg. Civica’s plant will be adjacent to Phlow’s future operation and AMPAC’s existing facility and the companies are seeking to establish the national pharmaceutical manufacturing hub in Petersburg, with research and development labs in Richmond. Phlow and the state government are both providing some financial support for Civica’s Petersburg plant.
“With its welcoming partnerships, central location along I-95, and growing life sciences workforce, we are thrilled to build our new facility in Virginia,” Martin VanTrieste, Civica’s president and CEO, said in a statement. “In addition, our partnership and co-manufacturing location with Phlow and AMPAC will be instrumental in our efforts to simplify what is typically a very complex supply channel. This is a dream come true for Civica and our hospital partners as we work together to stabilize the supply of quality medicines for patients across the country.”
“I’m excited for the commonwealth of Virginia, I’m excited for Petersburg, and what this means to establish Central Virginia as a pharmaceutical manufacturing hub as we work to create a cluster that is pioneering and reimagine how these medicines are made, said Phlow co-founder and CEO Dr. Eric Edwards. “The COVID-19 pandemic helped America uncover some substantial supply chain vulnerabilities. Phlow is humbled that we are working with key partners, including Civica Rx, VCU’s Medicines for All Institute and AMPAC Fine Chemicals to help provide a comprehensive, end-to-end solution that will ensure that every American has access to critical, essential medicine for decades to come.”
“This project is a tremendous win that will cement Virginia’s status as a leader in pharmaceutical manufacturing, an industry that remains at the forefront of responding to the global pandemic,” Gov. Ralph Northam said in a statement. “Civica’s partnership with Phlow Corp., Medicines for All Institute, and AMPAC Fine Chemicals will ensure the general public has access to high-quality, lifesaving medicines and provide a critical avenue for domestic drug manufacturing capabilities.”