Takeda distributes $ 126 million to take advantage of robotics, virtual reality and more at the California production site

After recently opening a cell therapy plant and opening land to another in Massachusetts, Takeda is turning west to bolster production in California.

The Japanese pharmacist is injecting $ 126 million into its Thousand Oaks facility to boost manufacturing and support new product lines, the Pacific Coast Business Times reported for the first time. Takeda was accompanied by the city’s mayor, Claudia Bill-de la Peña, for an innovative event on Thursday, July 22nd.

The disbursement will be used to grow Takeda’s treatment portfolio and increase capacity “to make additional products for the rare disease community,” Stephen Hatke, head of Takeda’s Thousand Oaks site, said in a video. YouTube about expansion. The company did not name the specific products it plans to manufacture there.

As for the expansion itself, Takeda will build a new 15,000-square-foot manufacturing plant on site and expand an existing 14,000-square-foot production space. Takeda has been calling around the Thousand Oaks area since 1996, the Business Times said.

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The company identified Thousand Oaks for its expansion “based on capacity, staff, local community and things we could bring to the area,” Hatke told the newspaper.

Currently, the site staff is 550 people. Takeda plans to increase its staff at Thousand Oaks, though nothing is certain, Hatke said, according to the Business Times.

The head of manufacturing noted some of the most advanced technologies that Takeda will deploy to upgraded facilities, such as automation and robotics, as well as virtual reality equipment and training.

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In Massachusetts, where most of Takeda’s operations in the United States have been based since the purchase of Shire, the Japanese pharmacy has rapidly accelerated its ambitions for cell therapy. In September, the company cut the ribbon at a new 24,000-square-foot R&D manufacturing center in Boston, which it said would manage the clinical development of three ongoing pipeline programs and two other prospects linked to clinical development by the end of 2021.

Earlier this year, the company revealed that it had opened ground at a 38,000-square-foot commercial cell therapy plant in Lexington, Massachusetts, located about 10 miles from downtown Boston. Takeda says the new $ 84 million plant will be used to do cell therapies for cancer and other diseases. This site will also take advantage of training in robotics and virtual reality, which according to Takeda should help operators “learn in a virtual environment before entering real facilities.”

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