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Victrex invests in manufacturing expansion for biomaterials business

March 3, 2023
Chemical Value Chain

Victrex plc (Thornton Cleveleys, U.K.) has announced priority investment to support expanding its medical division, Invibio Biomaterial Solutions, including the opening of a new product development facility in Leeds, UK, this month.

As part of Victrex’s plans to accelerate future applications in its medical business, it will add medical device R&D and manufacturing capability, building on Victrex’s existing talent base at its Hillhouse headquarter manufacturing site in Lancashire. The first phase in early 2023 includes the launch of a new facility at the University of Leeds, followed by the potential for further expansion plans. The new facility is expected to initially create around 20 new highly skilled jobs and further establish strong relationships with academia and medical businesses in the UK.

This is a significant commitment towards Victrex’s aim of increasing the proportion of revenues from its Invibio business. This will be supported by commercialisation of new applications for Trauma and Knee, as well as other growing segments including Cardio, CMF and Drug Delivery. In the next ten years, Victrex aims to have over one-third of revenues coming from Invibio, from less than 20% today.

The expansion plans reflect good progress in several medical programmes, including the development of a PEEK implant for total knee replacements. Progress on the PEEK Knee continues to build on a clinical study where 33 patients have now successfully been implanted, including 10 who have passed the primary end point (15 months) for the clinical trial, with no remedial intervention required. Victrex will also be working with top 5 Knee company Aesculap in a development collaboration, as well as existing partner Maxx Orthopaedics.

The pipeline in Trauma is also accelerating, following the launch of US-based In2Bones carbon fibre PEEK composite plating system, combined with new Trauma customers in Asia.

Jakob Sigurdsson, Victrex CEO says: “This investment is a key milestone in our global medical strategy, with our aim of treating a patient using Invibio solutions every 15 seconds by 2027. Our medical business has the potential to contribute around 1/3rd of Victrex’s revenues in 10 years’ time and our Leeds facility will enable us to provide a wide range of integrated technical, research & development and marketing solutions to help us further grow and diversify.

“Over recent years we have successfully diversified our medical business, with around half of our revenues now coming from non-Spinal applications. With good progress in a number of emerging segments, we need to ensure we have additional capability, to support how we commercialise and scale up these opportunities. The Leeds NPD facility will be a key part of that, building on our innovation and manufacturing hub at Hillhouse, in the UK.”

By Mary Bailey


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