India’s pharmaceuticals giant to open biotech lab and factory in Iskandar by end 2014

By Chee Su-Lin |

Mazlan Ami, Chief Financial Officer Bio-XCell Malaysia, Rizatuddin Ramli, CEO Bio-XCell Malaysia, Anand Iyer, and Jay Padasian, Senior Vice-President, Healthcare at Malaysian BiotechCorp

In the country’s quest to bring the country up the economic chain into high-value technology, Iskandar Malaysia’s biotech park, Bio-XCell, has committed India’s Agila Biotech to opening a facility there.

Agila Biotech (Malaysia) is a subsidiary of Bangalore’s Strides Arcolab Ltd, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of soft gelatin capsules and other pharmaceuticals.

In a recent signing of an agreement to build the facility, Agila Biotech (Malaysia)’s CEO Dr Anand Iyer promised to establish a range of weird and wonderful explorations there.

These include end-to-end manufacturing of biologics, developing biomolecules, manufacturing mammalian cell culture, microbial fermentation, and the production of recombinant monoclonal antibodies and recombinant therapeutic proteins, among others.

If you survived reading through that list, you’d probably conclude that these are things that probably only make sense to people in the industry but sure sound brainy to the rest of us. From a property perspective, however, one is led to imagine that such exceptional work would require people with attractive salaries which would support the high-value properties being built there.

In the agreement, Malaysian Bio-XCell Sdn Bhd, which is owned by the government’s Malaysian Biotechnology Corporation and property developer UEM Land Bhd, will build the customised facility at a cost of RM67.3mil. This building will then be leased to Agila Biotech. All other related state-of-the-art equipment, integration service and testing of this turnkey project will be funded by Agila Biotech (Malaysia).

Both parties are aiming for the R&D and manufacturing facilities to be operational by end 2014.

Other multinational companies to set up in Bio-XCell are Biocon from India, MetEx from France and Glycos Biotechnologies from US.


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