One year after pledging to invest $100 million in the Songdo area in Incheon (primarily to be near major customers Celltrion and Samsung Biologics), 170-year-old German life sciences company Sartorius last month committed to investing around $300 million through the end of 2024 in expanding its activities in South Korea. In Songdo, the company plans to launch cell culture media production and to assemble sterile systems for efficient and flexible manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals, among other operations. “The development of the biopharmaceutical industry in Asia and, in particular, South Korea, has entered a new phase characterized by a high innovation and investment pace on the part of our customers,” said Sartorius Executive Board Chairman and CEO Joachim Kreuzburg. “With our significant investments in Songdo, we will be increasing capacities, moving production operations closer to our customers in the region and substantially accelerating our delivery speed.” At the same time, the company pledge to invest €100 million at its sites in Aubagne, Cergy and Lourdes, France, creating up to 400 new jobs by 2025.
Austrian wood paneling company Kronospan will invest €180 million in a new factory in the Catalunya Sud industrial estate in Tortosa (Tarragona), representing the creation of 185 direct jobs and around 1,500 indirect jobs. The project, the largest foreign investment in Terres de l'Ebre, was announced in October by Catalonia Minister of Business and Work Roger Torrent, who said, “It will give a second life to waste materials that were previously discarded. This project is 100% sustainable and fully complies with the concept of the circular economy.” According to Invest in Spain, Kronospan is investing in the area to be closer to its customers there, gain more effective access to the market in the south of France, and gain access to large urban and industrial areas. Javier Macicior, general director of Kronospan Spain, praised “the work done in collaboration with both the Catalan regional government and the city of Tortosa” and noted that the plant is expected to be operational by the end of 2022. He also said the new operation “will need a whole cluster of complementary companies near the factory in order to be more competitive.” Kronospan is an Austrian multinational dedicated to the manufacture and distribution of wood panels. Formed as a company in 1897, Kronospan currently has a workforce of over 14,500 workers and more than 40 factories around the world.