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COUNTY COMMISSIONERS APPROVE AMENDMENT IN SUPPORT OF NOVO NORDISK’S HISTORY-MAKING EXPANSION

COUNTY COMMISSIONERS APPROVE AMENDMENT IN SUPPORT OF NOVO NORDISK’S
HISTORY-MAKING EXPANSION

Danish Life Sciences Leader Will Invest $4 Billion at its Clayton Campus, Create 1,000 Jobs

Johnston County, N.C. – June 24, 2024. The Johnston County Board of Commissioners voted this morning to approve an amended package of performance-based economic development incentives that will support a major expansion at Novo Nordisk’s [NYSE: NVO] bio- manufacturing campus in Clayton. Several hours later, top officials of the Denmark-based company announced it will invest US$4.1 billion in a new 1.4 million-sq.-ft. (130,064-sq.-m) facility here in a move that will create 1,000 new jobs.

“Novo Nordisk has been among Johnston County’s largest private employers since arriving three decades ago,” County Commission Chairman Butch Lawter said. “There’s no over-stating this company’s importance as an economic and fiscal driver here. They continue to bring significant capital investment and high-wage job opportunities. They bring additional civic and community engagement. They bring new ideas, new people, and new energy here. And they are among our closest and most consistent partners when it comes to educational quality and workforce readiness.”

Commissioners recognized the need to support growing industries in order to create homegrown career opportunities for Johnston County residents. This morning’s vote amended a pledge of performance-based incentives initially approved in September 2022 as part of the company’s 12-year growth horizon. Novo Nordisk’s presence in the county dates to the mid 1990s and has played a key role in transforming a local economy long dependent on tobacco and other agricultural commodities. The company’s commitment to its sprawling Clayton campus, along with the equally sizable presence of Spanish biomanufacturer Grifols nearby, helps account for Johnston County’s status as North Carolina’s fastest growing county as of the 2020 U.S. Census.

“Back in 2022, we had an opportunity to compete with locations all over the world for a major expansion that we hoped would be located here in North Carolina,” Shaylah Nunn Jones, Director of Public Affairs & Communications at Novo Nordisk, told commissioners. “Your board showed up, and it was for that reason that we sent a strong message to Denmark that Johnston County was open to business, that the United States and North Carolina and Johnston County were willing and able to support Novo Nordisk’s growth and expansion.”

The company’s expansion will take place on a 56-acre (22.7-hectare) parcel adjacent to its current site. The new facility will total four times the size of Novo Nordisk’s original facility at 3612 Powhatan Road in Clayton, according to Niels Laurbjerg Nielsen, the company’s Corporate Vice President, who unveiled specifics at a standing-room-only gathering this afternoon that included U.S. Senator Thom Tillis, N.C. Transportation Secretary Joey Hopkins and Jesper Møller Sørensen, Denmark’s Ambassador to the United States. The project comes not long after the completion of the company’s $2 billion Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) facility announced in August 2015, which made history that year as North Carolina’s most capital-rich corporate facility.

Chris Johnson, director of the County’s Office of Economic Development, says today’s announcement also makes history. “Because of the leadership of our county commissioners over the last 20 years, Johnston County will again be a part of the single largest life sciences manufacturing investment in the State of North Carolina, and quite possibly the largest in the U.S.,” Johnson said.

The County’s partnership with Novo Nordisk has resulted in innovations in education and workforce readiness. The most visible symbol of this collaboration is the Johnston County Workforce Development Center, a 30,000-sq.-ft. (2,787-sq.-m) training facility constructed on land donated to the County by Novo Nordisk in the early 2000s. The center, which underwent extensive renovations in 2019, provides simulated production experience to newly hired biomanufacturing workers on equipment provided by Novo Nordisk and Grifols. Talks are currently underway to dramatically expand the facility to accommodate anticipated needs. More recently, the Johnston County Commissioners Promise Program bridges the tuition gap for Pell Grant recipients among Johnston County high school seniors attending Johnston Community College (JCC). “And just this past year, we’ve implemented the BioWorks certification curriculum in all Johnston County public high schools. This credential teaches the fundamentals of working as a process technician in biotechnology, pharmaceuticals or chemical engineering facilities.”

An economic impact analysis by Dr. Michael Walden in the fall of 2022 found that construction alone of Novo Nordisk’s facility upgrades will spark millions of dollars in increases to the gross domestic product (GDP). Once operational, state, county and municipal governments will see millions in new tax revenues annually from the expansion, according to Dr. Walden, who is Professor Emeritus of Economics at North Carolina State University.

“Our office has always lived by the motto that nothing empowers a person more than a good- paying job with a living wage,” Johnson told commissioners. “Your leadership, vision and collaboration give our citizens that personal empowerment right here in Johnston County.”

The Johnston County Economic Development Office (JCEDO) facilitates value-added interaction between government, education, and the private sector in encouraging and promoting job creation and economic investment in Johnston County. A unit of county government, JCEDO collaborates with local, regional, and statewide partners and allies in providing confidential location assistance to businesses and technical support to the county’s 11 municipalities. Its menu of services includes customized digital mapping, labor and wage analysis, site readiness assistance and incentive packaging. For additional information, visit www.GrowWithJoCo.com

 

 

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