Pharmaceutical giant MSD expands Irish operations

The multi-national pharmaceutical giant MSD – whose animal health division manufactures farm vaccines and medication – has announced the creation of 330 jobs in Ireland over the coming three years.

These new jobs will be created at the company’s bases in Cork and Carlow in a €280m investment by MSD. While jobs have not been created in the animal health division itself, which is based in Dublin, the move will boost overall company operations and add to the individual site regions – in rural Co. Cork and on the outskirts of Carlow town respectively.

Over 200 new employees will be hired in the MSD plant in Brinny, Co. Cork, which works on medicines for lung cancer, melanoma, hepatitis C and rheumatoid arthritis.

Meanwhile, a further 120 recruits will be brought in at the company’s Carlow plant, which is a manufacturing site and, according to MSD, “the company’s first stand-alone vaccine and biologics facility outside the US”.

The firm, with headquarters in the USA, will bring its total number of employees up to more than 1,900 with the move. This move is designed to meet the increased global demand for MSD’s medicines and vaccines produced in Ireland, according to the company.

There will be various types of jobs created such as biochemistry, biology, engineering, technical, quality and operations roles. MSD has a current workforce over 1,600 people in Ireland with plants in Dublin, Cork, Carlow and Tipperary. Its Irish operations had a turnover of €4.7 billion in 2016.

MSD creates common farm vaccines such as Bovilis BVD, Bovilis IBR Marker, Blackleg Vaccine and Bovivac S. It also produces a range of animal antibiotics and pour-ons.

Sanat Chattopadhyay, MSD Executive Vice President and President of MSD’s Manufacturing Division, spoke at the announcement of the move, stating: “Today’s announcement is a reflection of MSD Ireland’s positive standing in our global network, a vote of confidence in our people and their work, and a sign of MSD’s future commitment to Ireland.

The expansion of our presence in Ireland is a testament to the talent of our Irish employees. In recent years our Irish businesses have played an increasingly important role in the production of some of MSD’s most important breakthrough medicines for the global market.

Minster for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor, welcomed the move and the locations chosen, noting: “It is particularly gratifying that this expansion and additional job creation will take place in two regional locations, thereby strengthening the government’s efforts to ensure balanced industrial development around the country.”

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