SK’s AFC opens a new manufacturing facility in the U.S.

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SK’s AFC opens a new manufacturing facility in the U.S.

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Attendees pose at a ceremony marking the opening of Ampac Fine Chemicals’ new contract development and manufacturing facility, with a capacity of 180,000 liters (47,550 gallons), in Petersburg, Virginia, on Sunday. [SK GROUP]

One year after SK Holdings acquired Ampac Fine Chemicals (AFC), a U.S.-based contract manufacturer of active pharmaceutical ingredients, a new facility opening was celebrated Sunday.

The site, in Petersburg, Virginia, will produce materials for AFC’s drugs, with a maximum capacity of 180,000 liters (47,550 gallons).

Rosalyn Dance, a Virginia state senator, and AFC executives, were present at the ceremony.

The facility was previously owned by Boehringer Ingelheim. AFC bought the site in 2016.

SK Holdings acquired 100 percent of the U.S. manufacturer last year. While the price was not disclosed, it was estimated at around 700 to 800 billion won ($620 to $709 million).

The decision came as SK hopes to make the biopharmaceutical industry its next cash cow following a slowdown in the company’s semiconductor business.

SK said that the acquisition will give the conglomerate three production facilities and one research lab in the United States. The global pharmaceutical market is growing by 5 percent a year as societies around the world age rapidly, according to SK.

“AFC’s updated facility boasts new, state-of-the-art technology, including environmentally-responsible manufacturing equipment that we hope will attract more talent and new business to this part of Virginia,” said U.S. Congressman Donald McEachin.

“We are humbled by AFC’s investment in our community services, students, educational institutions, workers and Virginia’s future and look forward to many years of continued collaboration to ensure our best days are ahead.”

Ampac Fine Chemicals, founded in 1998, produces active pharmaceutical ingredients used for anticancer drugs as well as drugs for the central nervous system.

Its business has been growing at an average 15 percent annually, SK said in statement.

BY PARK EUN-JEE [park.eunjee@joongang.co.kr]

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