Grand River Aseptic Manufacturing (GRAM) has broken ground on an 18,000-square-foot phase two facility expansion at 524 Butterworth St. SW, tripling capacity and marking its third multi-million dollar investment in the past two years.
The $50 million investment in the fill/finish expansion — funded by GRAM’s own business revenue — increases the total footprint across all GRAM facilities to 230,000 square feet, with the help of CRB, Midwest Cleanrooms, MJM Process and Rockwell Automation.
The expansion will increase manufacturing capacity, which will allow the company to serve biotech and pharmaceutical companies with the desire to efficiently increase their product offerings.
The new features will offer flexible modular technology and commercial-scale filling equipment, including a new VarioSys syringe and vial filler, with an additional Bausch+Ströbel Vial Filler with SKAN Isolator Technology.
The first expansion, which took place in June 2020, included equipment and technology from Bausch+Strobel, SKAN and IMA. The phase one expansion was named the 2021 Facility of the Year Award Winner for Special Recognition for Operational Agility: COVID-19 Impact by the International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE).
GRAM’s expansion and use of innovative equipment and technology has lent much help to the COVID-19 pandemic by contributing to SARS-CoV-2 vaccine manufacturing in partnership with Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc.
The company attributes much of its success and continuous growth to its team of 400 employees, which doubled in size over the last year as the company battled the pandemic.
“Embarking on multiple expansions and opening the doors of two state-of-the-art pharmaceutical manufacturing facilities over the last two years, right here in our hometown, is tremendous,” said Tom Ross, president and CEO of GRAM. “The innovative modular technology GRAM ordered for this new space arrives in early 2022 and allows GRAM to expand offerings to existing and future customers, ultimately taking on more products to support industry demand for getting products to market.”
The expansion will further aid the company in having an impact at the local, state and national level.
Attendees of the groundbreaking event included Ross, Senator Debbie Stabenow and Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalyn Bliss.