Lilly Increases Investment to $9 Billion for Manufacturing of API Production

This is the largest investment in active pharmaceutical ingredient manufacturing of synthetic medicines in US history.

Kristen Kazarian, Managing Editor

May 28, 2024

3 Min Read
Lilly ups investment in one US state.
Lilly has more than doubled its investment in one state for major medicines.Douglas Cliff/iStock/Getty Images Plus via Getty Images

Eli Lilly and Co. has more than doubled its investment in its Lebanon, IN, manufacturing site with a new $5.3 billion commitment, increasing the company's total investment in this site from $3.7 billion to $9 billion.

The expansion will enhance Lilly's capacity to manufacture active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) for Zepbound (tirzepatide) injection and Mounjaro (tirzepatide) injection.

Since 2020, Lilly has committed more than $16 billion to develop new manufacturing sites in the US and Europe. New locations outside Indiana include Research Triangle Park and Concord, NC; Limerick, Ireland; and Alzey, Germany. The company also has invested an additional $1.2 billion to update existing manufacturing facilities in Indianapolis and recently acquired an injectable manufacturing facility in Pleasant Prairie, WI from Nexus Pharmaceuticals. Together, these manufacturing investments total more than $18 billion.

"Today's announcement tops the largest manufacturing investment in our company's history and, we believe, represents the single largest investment in synthetic medicine API manufacturing in US history," said David A. Ricks, Lilly's chair and CEO. "This multisite campus will make our latest medicines, including Zepbound and Mounjaro, support pipeline growth and leverage the latest technology and automation for maximum efficiency, safety, and quality control..."

Lilly embarked on a significant manufacturing expansion in 2020, driven by the research results for tirzepatide. The company made this strategic investment decision at risk so that upon the approval of Mounjaro (2022) and Zepbound (2023), it could make these medicines available to adults living with type 2 diabetes and obesity, respectively. Since then, the strong demand for these medicines underscores the urgent unmet need for treatments in both type 2 diabetes and obesity.

As part of this additional investment in the Lebanon site, located within Indiana's LEAP Research and Innovation District, Lilly expects to add 200 full-time jobs for highly skilled workers such as engineers, scientists, operating personnel and lab technicians, resulting in an estimated 900 full-time employees when the facility is fully operational. Additionally, there will be more than 5,000 construction jobs during the site's development.

To support Lilly's expansion project, the state will partner on infrastructure solutions, including road improvements, water, electric, and other utilities, as well as workforce development commitments and certain economic incentives tied to the company's achievement of investment and employment goals. The state's workforce development support includes the contribution of land, pending approval, for the construction of a learning and training center that will be part of the larger LEAP industrial development, along with a commitment to work with Lilly to raise capital for its completion. The new training center aligns with Lilly's previously announced financial support for scholarship and training programs with Purdue University and Ivy Tech Community College, and the BioCrossroads-led training center at 16 Tech.

Since breaking ground at its Lebanon manufacturing site in 2023, Lilly has transformed a significant portion of the nearly 600 acres within the complex into an active construction site. The company expects to begin making medicines in Lebanon toward the end of 2026, with operations scaling up through 2028.

About the Author(s)

Kristen Kazarian

Managing Editor

Kristen Kazarian has been a writer and editor for more than three decades. She has worked at several consumer magazines and B2B publications in the fields of food and beverage, packaging, processing, women's interest, local news, health and nutrition, fashion and beauty, automotive, and computers.

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