Johnston County, N.C. – June 9, 2020. Grifols Therapeutics LLC, already Johnston County’s largest industrial employer, will invest $351.6 million in an expansion that will add 300 jobs at its Clayton campus. The Barcelona, Spain-based company will build a new plasma fractionation facility and logistics center in response to growing global demand for its medicines.
Governor Roy Cooper announced the news in a press release earlier today. “Companies like Grifols continue to choose expansion in North Carolina because our workforce can meet the needs of this important facility,” said Governor Cooper. “During this public health crisis, we have seen the value of manufacturing close to home and this expansion means new, life-saving medicines will be manufactured in Clayton.”
Grifols Therapeutics is part of Grifols, S.A., founded in 1909. The company transforms human plasma into essential medicines that treat chronic, rare and life-threatening diseases. As part of Grifols commitment to society, the company is also playing a leadership role in the response to COVID-19 by developing a plasma-based antibody treatment for the disease. In partnership with the federal government, Grifols is collecting convalescent plasma from eligible COVID-19 survivors across the country. Grifols’ 13 plasma collection centers in North Carolina are participating in this important effort. Convalescent plasma from donors will be manufactured into a hyperimmune therapy specific to COVID-19 at the company’s manufacturing campus in Clayton.
“Today is a very exciting day for Grifols,” said Doug Burns, president of Grifols Therapeutics. “We are extremely proud to expand our Johnston County manufacturing operations and would like to thank state, county and municipal leaders for their strong support. Our new state-of-the-art fractionation facility will help us meet the growing demand for plasma-derived medicines in the United States and around the world.”
Jobs at Grifols’ new Clayton facilities will average $69,032 in annual wages, with new positions spanning fractionation technicians, logistics specialists, maintenance engineers and quality assurance personnel. The company currently employs more than 1,735 at its Clayton facility, which Grifols has operated since its 2010 acquisition of Talecris Biotherapeutics.
“When a company that has operated here for the past ten years is willing to undertake an expansion this significant, it speaks to their confidence in our community, our workforce and our leadership,” said Ted Godwin, chairman of the Johnston County Board of Commissioners. “Today’s announcement by Grifols also says great things about the future of our economy, as we go about putting our citizens back to work and embracing new opportunities ahead in the post-pandemic landscape.”
Clayton town leaders also expressed support for the project. “We welcome today’s exciting news and look forward to continuing to build on the very positive relationship the town has had with Grifols since 2010,” said Jody McLeod, Mayor of Clayton. “Aside from being our largest private employer, the company has been a terrific partner and advocate for our community in many ways.”
Grifols has long played an active role, for example, in the Johnston County Workforce Development Center, a 30,000-sq.-ft. training facility remodeled in 2018 to simulate life sciences work environments. Along with neighboring Novo Nordisk, Grifols supports the center financially through a special research tax zone and has also donated a significant amount of technical equipment for use in bio-processing instruction. The center, a unique partnership the two companies forged with county government, Johnston Community College and the Johnston County Economic Development Corporation, is among the unique assets of North Carolina’s BioPharma Crescent, a collaborative economic development initiative involving Johnston, Wilson, Nash and Pitt counties, as well as the NC Biotechnology Center’s Eastern Office. “Education and training are a major part of what created the BioPharma Crescent and made it home to 10,000 bio-manufacturing jobs,” explained Chris Johnson, director of the Johnston County Office of Economic Development. “The seeds of today’s announcement were sown years ago with some very bold investments in bio-processing infrastructure and talent pipelines.”
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.jcnced.com