By Shim Woo-hyun
Korea Herald correspondent
SAN FRANCISCO -- Lotte Biologics will invest around $3 billion by 2030 to build new CDMO plants in South Korea, Lotte Biologics CEO Richard Lee announced during the company’s presentation at the 41st JPMorgan Healthcare Conference held in San Francisco, Tuesday.
The investment will go toward building three plants, with a combined manufacturing capacity of 360,000 liters, 120,000 each, according to Lee. About $1 billion will be needed per plant, Lee estimated.
The company will start to build its first plant in the second half this year, finish construction by 2025, adopt good manufacturing practices in 2026 and start commercial operation in 2027.
It aims to have all three plants up and running by 2034.
Backed by their operations, the company could potentially post $3 billion in annual sales, with an operating profit rate of 35 percent, it said.
Lotte Biologics added that the company will build development-focused lab facilities nearby the manufacturing sites for startups and drug developers to use at no cost. It did not disclose where in Korea it would build the plants and lab facilities.
In addition to the new plants, Lotte Biologics will add a new facility for antibody drug conjugates (ADC) within its Syracuse plant.
Lee said the company will increase partnerships with ADC developers so it can become “the most trusted ADC conjugation site in the US.”
The ADC conjugation facility is expected to take some 15 months and is slated to begin operations next year.
Lotte Biologics is also looking into options to create a contract development organization (CDO) office in US-based biotech hubs, such as Kendall Square in Boston and San Francisco.
“We will improve our CDO capabilities, including cell line development, process development and analytical services,” Lee said.
In terms of an initial public offering, Lotte Biologics said the company plans to launch an IPO after completing the construction of the first plant.