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Sigma-Aldrich Acquires Iropharm to Expand cGMP Capacity

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Sigma-Aldrich Corporation has announced that it has acquired Honeywell International’s Iropharm unit, a custom chemical synthesis business located in Arklow, Ireland. 

The addition of Iropharm will substantially increase SAFC’s active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) and pharmaceutical intermediates manufacturing capacities, enabling the Company to better support drug development from early-stage through commercialization.

With annual revenues of roughly $16 million, the mid-year addition will not have a material impact on the Company’s sales. 

The acquisition is expected to help the Company meet its growth goals over the next several years and to be neutral to mildly accretive to earnings in 2006, with no initial charges. 

All current employees in good standing, including all of Iropharm’s existing management team will remain.

The Iropharm facility in Arklow is an FDA inspected cGMP manufacturing site with total reactor capacity of 90,000 liters. 

The plant features one of the few commercial scale simulated moving bed (SMB) multi-column chromatographic separation units in the world. 

Used to resolve chiral compounds from racemic mixtures into pure enantiomers, SMB capability is one of the fastest methods to obtain enantiomerically pure drugs, increasingly important as the demand for single-enantiomer drugs continues to grow.

"The acquisition of Iropharm fulfills our promise to add commercial-scale cGMP manufacturing capacity and continue our strategy of providing customers with state-of-the-art technologies to meet their custom API and intermediate needs," commented Frank Wicks, President of SAFC. 

"Because over 80% of newly developed drugs are chiral drugs and Iropharm is a leading player in the global field of SMB custom manufacturing, this addition puts SAFC in an even stronger position to serve the pharmaceutical industry."

"This will be a good fit for both organizations," said James Ennis, Iropharm Plant Manager.

"Iropharm has significant pharmaceutical and fine chemical manufacturing experience and will help secure SAFC’s position as a serious contender in the commercial-scale custom cGMP synthesis market."

"We look forward to partnering with SAFC’s business development staff to leverage our manufacturing strengths for the SAFC organization."