Despite pandemic, Samsung Bio set to open ‘super plant’ early

Samsung says its 4th plant will begin operations by October — six months ahead of schedule.

Dan Stanton, Managing editor

April 29, 2022

2 Min Read
Despite pandemic, Samsung Bio set to open ‘super plant’ early
Image: Stock Photo Secrets

Samsung Biologics says its fourth plant will begin operations by October — six months ahead of schedule. 

Samsung Biologics announced plans for its so called ‘P4 Super Plant’ in August 2020. This week, the Korean contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) told stakeholders the first phase of biomanufacturing operations will begin in the coming months.

“Samsung Biologics’ Plant 4 construction is expected to be partially operational by October 2022 to support 6 X 10 kL production capacity,” the firm said in a statement. The full completion of the plant is set for mid-2023, the CDMO added.


Image: Stock Photo Secrets

The 60,000 L of bioreactor capacity set to come online is a fraction of the total 256,000 liters of mammalian production capacity planned for the plant, which will comprise of a mix of small to large scale bioreactors (2,000 L, 10,000 L, and 15,000 L) as well as fill/finish capacity. The total 620,000 liters at the site in Songdo, Incheon will represent about 30% of the total global third-party biologics capacity, the firm has said.

The plant has been constructed during the COVID-19 pandemic; a period that has seen supply chain bottlenecks affecting all aspects of the industry, including construction.

Despite this, the planned opening of plant 4 is six months ahead of schedule, a Samsung Biologics spokesperson told BioProcess Insider. 

We’re able to build plants at a much faster rate compared to the industry average through the know-how built up from years of constructing not just the Samsung Biologics plants, but also Samsung’s semi-conductor manufacturing plants which also similarly require particle-free, cleanroom environment,” we were told.

“Even during the pandemic, our EPCV [engineering, procurement, construction and validation] division was able to utilize its wide pool of partners for on-time delivery of materials and equipment.”

Beyond its fourth plant, Samsung Biologics is eyeing up further expansion having acquired further land in Songdo at a cost of KRW 426,022,798,554 ($347 million). The land will be used for “future greenfield expansion projects for capacity expansions as part of Biocampus 2,” the company told us earlier this month.

For the first quarter 2022, the CDMO reported a 96% rise in revenues on the previous year, clocking in sales of KRW 511.3 billion ($400 million). This was attributed to the expansion of product sales and the increasing exchange rates amid stable operations of Plants 1, 2, and 3.

About the Author(s)

Dan Stanton

Managing editor

Journalist covering the international biopharmaceutical manufacturing and processing industries.

Founder and editor of Bioprocess Insider, a daily news offshoot of publication Bioprocess International, with expertise in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors, in particular, the following niches: CROs, CDMOs, M&A, IPOs, biotech, bioprocessing methods and equipment, drug delivery, regulatory affairs and business development.

From London, UK originally but currently based in Montpellier, France through a round-a-bout adventure that has seen me live and work in Leeds (UK), London, New Zealand, and China.

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