Charlottetown-based drug-manufacturer BioVectra Inc. on Monday announced a five-year, $144.6 million expansion project in its facilities on P.E.I. and in Windsor, N.S.

The company issued a statement saying the funding will include a $37.5 million contribution from the federal government’s Strategic Innovation Fund – the fund’s largest financing ever in Atlantic Canada.  

BioVectra is a contract drug manufacturer for major pharmaceutical clients, including most of the top 20. Founded in 1970, the company was purchased in 2013 by Questcor Pharmaceuticals of Anaheim, Calif., for $100 million, and since then has been expanding. Last April, it received a $5 million loan from the federal government to build its Windsor facility.

“Canadian companies like BioVectra are creating new jobs and establishing themselves as global leaders in producing lifesaving treatments for serious illnesses that affect millions of people around the world,” said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who was in Charlottetown to announce the funding. “Today, we are not only investing in an innovative Canadian business, but also in Canadians and the future prosperity of our country.”

The project is intended to support BioVectra’s on-going Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients production expansion in Charlottetown, as well as an expansion of its Biologics capabilities in Windsor, including a mammalian cell culture facility.

“We are pleased to announce plans to create 150 additional jobs, 110 to be located at our Windsor site and 40 in Charlottetown,” said BioVectra President Oliver Technow in the statement. “Since 2015, we have invested approximately $25 million per year in expansions and technologies that have vastly enhanced our capabilities.”

Beyond these expansion plans, BioVectra said it intends to complement its existing academic partnerships by forming additional collaborations with Canadian academic institutions. This investment includes reinforcing its future talent base by providing over 25 students each year with on-the-job training and internship opportunities.