Merit wins £30m Piramal’s Antibody Drug Conjugate manufacturing facility expansion project

Merit to use its FlexiPOD® V4.0 platform to design, build and validate the facility in 16 months.

Merit Health, offsite construction specialist for technically complex, zero-carbon emissions buildings, have been appointed by Piramal Pharma Solutions (Piramal) to deliver their new Antibody Drug Conjugate (ADC) manufacturing facility in Grangemouth.

Piramal offers end-to-end development and manufacturing solutions to global pharmaceutical companies as a CDMO, developing and manufacturing bio-conjugates, including Antibody Drug Conjugates (ADCs), at its Grangemouth site. ADCs are currently used in targeted cancer treatment but have a wider potential for further applications.

With the increase in demand for such therapies, Piramal required a fast-track solution to increase their manufacturing capabilities quickly. Merit Health will use its FLEXI POD® solution, a hybrid offering of traditional shell and core and offsite manufactured fit out which is particularly suited to larger technical buildings such as biopharma facilities and hospitals. With a 75-80% offsite manufactured value, FLEXI POD® also provides benefits in terms of plant space reduction and services distribution, whilst delivering enhanced technical performance and energy performance. This reduction in footprint gives consequential benefit to overall costs both in terms of capital investment and ongoing revenue including maintenance and energy.

Merit Health launched FLEXI POD® in 2020 in response to client requests for fast-track solutions for technically complex buildings. Merit Health was awarded the project thanks to its comprehensive offsite offering, which significantly reduces project delivery risk and delivers the new facility significantly faster compared to traditional building methods.

Tony Wells, CEO at Merit Health, said: We are delighted to be working on another important manufacturing facility expansion project, showing that the UK life sciences sector is on a significant and rapid growth trajectory. We understand that speed and cost-efficiency combined with minimised risk and successful ‘right first time’ validation are crucial for the timely development of such treatments. Our offsite offering was developed to support these imperatives meaning that critical therapies and products are in production and manufacturing significantly quicker than traditional methods of construction can offer. We are also proud to work with the Piramal team to eliminate scope 1 carbon emissions from the building design as well as scope 2&3 reduction through off-site manufacturing for sustainability as well as productivity.

Merit launched its Health offering in 2020 and since has been appointed for a number of UK-based construction projects in the sector, including the expansion of the rapid response facility in Darlington for CPI, a lateral flow manufacturing site for Abingdon Health in York, in addition to the UK’s first CAR-T cell manufacturing facility in Stevenage for Autolus Therapeutics.