The big drug maker, which is undergoing a huge reorganization that will eliminate 5,500 jobs and reduce costs by about $1 billion by 2011, is selling a plant in Lafayette, Indiana, toEvonik Industries AG, a German conglomerate, which will continue operating it to make key ingredients for specialty chemical and animal health products for Lilly and others ( see statement).
Terms weren't disclosed, but the plant's 700 workers will remain with the new owner, according to both companies. Lilly used the plant to make active pharmaceutical ingredients for some of its biggest-selling drugs, such as Prozac and the Cialis erectile-dysfunction pill and the Gemzar cancer med. But recently, the plant has gone underutilized and the head count has dropped by half.
At the time Lilly disclosed plans last summer to sell the plant, the drug maker described it as state of the art, as The Indianapolis Star notes. But with more of its pipeline filled with biotech drugs, the plant will no longer suit its needs, since these meds require very different manufacturing processes. And as the paper points out, the Gemzar patent expires in 2013.