Eli Lilly said today it will spend $850 million this year on capital projects for its facilities across the U.S., including research laboratories, manufacturing sites, and general and administrative areas.
Lilly said its capital spending reflected demand for the company’s products, its commitment to the U.S. market—and the potential for future growth due to its pipeline of treatment candidates for cancer, pain, diabetes, and other unmet medical needs.
“Our future at Lilly is bright, as we're on a path to launch 20 new products in a 10-year time frame,” Lilly president and CEO David A. Ricks said in a statement. “As we have for our entire 140-year history, we continue to see Indiana and the U.S. as attractive places to research and make the medicines that we sell around the world.”
Ricks said Lilly has spent approximately $5 billion in its U.S. facilities over the past decade—and will spend more if President Donald Trump and Congress agree to tax-code changes that benefit companies like Lilly by promoting business activity. One such change proposed by Trump would lower, from 35% to 10%, the income tax rate of corporations that repatriate profits earned overseas.
The pharma giant’s capital projects will include an $85 million expansion of its Trulicity® (dulaglutide) device assembly operations in the U.S.—part of a 5-year effort to expand Lilly’s diabetes products manufacturing operations in the U.S.
That effort, Lilly added, also includes the completion of a $140 million insulin cartridge production facility, which the company was set to dedicate this morning at an event designed to bring company executives together with federal, state, and local government officials at the Lilly Technology Center.
Among dignitaries set to join Lilly officials at the event are Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (R), Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett (D), and U.S. Reps. Susan Brooks (R-5th District), and Todd Rokita (R-4th District).
Lilly said it spent approximately $1.1 billion to expand its U.S. diabetes products manufacturing operations in the U.S. between 2012 and last year. That capital, the company said, was spent to upgrade existing facilities as well as add new capacity and capabilities, based on the company's evolving diabetes pipeline and portfolio, and increasing prevalence of the disease.
Also during the past 5 years, Lilly said, U.S. manufacturing employment rose by more than 1000 employees—from 5000 to 6000—with approximately 400 added in Indianapolis, where the company is headquartered. Construction-trade employment had averaged nearly 500 jobs during the period, with a peak of nearly 1000 workers.
A significant level of construction-trade workers will be needed, the company said, given both its ongoing operations and expansion programs.
In recent months, Lilly has also laid off significant numbers of workers. In January, the company disclosed plans to eliminate about 485 field-based employees based in its Integrated Health Partners (IHP)/Cardiovascular Account Specialists organization within the company’s U.S. Bio-Medicines Business Unit. Those job cuts followed the Phase III trial failure of its drug candidate solanezumab in patients with mild dementia due to Alzheimer's disease.
In February, Lilly said it would eliminate 200 R&D positions worldwide—but added in a statement that it would also “increase our investment and hire in strategic areas, including molecule-making capabilities, immunology, and Alzheimer's disease, across our U.S. research sites later this year.”
Lilly ranked No. 6 on GEN's list of Top 10 Job-Cutting Companies of 2013 by disclosing plans to eliminate up to 1624 jobs, citing changes in demand and projected sales declines due to exclusivity ending for the antidepressant Cymbalta® (duloxetine hydrochloride) and the osteoporosis drug Evista® (raloxifene hydrochloride). The company in 2014 would not confirm to GEN how many of the full-time and reclassified sales staffers were ultimately laid off.