February 7, 2024

AstraZeneca to Expand Manufacturing Operations in Rockville

AstraZeneca leased a building in Rockville and will invest $300 million in the new manufacturing facility.
(Courtesy AstraZeneca)

Maryland Governor Wes Moore this week announced that AstraZeneca, a global science-led biopharmaceutical company, is establishing a new manufacturing facility in Rockville. The company is investing $300 million in a state-of-the-art facility located at 9950 Medical Center Dr., where it will launch its life-saving cell therapy platforms in the U.S. for critical cancer trials and future commercial supply.

The new facility, expected to be fully operational in 2026, will also lead to recruitment for approximately 150 new employees focused on an array of cutting-edge technologies to deliver life-saving cell therapies. Additionally, AstraZeneca plans to retain 4,500 employees at its other facilities throughout Montgomery County.

“AstraZeneca and the State of Maryland share a deep commitment to innovation. It makes us the perfect pairing for this next-generation cell therapy facility,” said Gov. Moore. “This significant investment in our life sciences sector will help maintain Maryland’s leadership in the industry and sharpen our competitive edge. We are deeply grateful for AstraZeneca’s partnership and continued commitment to our state.”

The 84,000 square-foot space will initially focus on the manufacturing of CAR-T cell therapies to enable cancer clinical trials to be conducted around the world. Over time, the site may expand its focus to support other disease areas.

“Manufacturing is an area that many people do not associate with Montgomery County, but we are aggressively pursuing more manufacturing opportunities and hope for more successes like we are witnessing with AstraZeneca,” said Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich. “AstraZeneca’s decision to invest and build its CAR-T therapy manufacturing operation in Montgomery County affirms our role as a global leader in cell therapy and related technologies. We are excited about their plans to locate this facility here, expanding jobs and adding to the important work thousands of AstraZeneca employees already do here in the county every day.”

To assist with project costs, the Maryland Department of Commerce is working to approve a $500,000 conditional loan through the Advantage Maryland program. Montgomery County is planning to provide a $100,000 conditional grant through its Economic Development Fund. The company is also eligible for various other incentives, including the More Jobs for Marylanders program and the state's Job Creation Tax Credit.

“We are incredibly excited that more than 150 new highly skilled jobs are being created to bring our scientific work and therapies to clinical trials which could transform the lives of patients around the world,” said AstraZeneca Executive Vice President of Global Operations & IT and Chief Sustainability Officer Pam Cheng. “This new $300 million investment will accelerate our ambition to make next-generation cell therapy a reality, ensuring that we are ready to scale and meet the demands of patients.”

The new facility in Rockville is located less than five miles from one of the company’s five global research and development centers and sits within Montgomery County’s booming life sciences corridor. With close proximity to several universities, the location provides an attractive place for ongoing talent recruitment. This site will become part of the AstraZeneca global supply network of nearly 30 manufacturing and supply sites in 16 countries which are either currently operational or under development.

"Montgomery County is at the epicenter of cell and gene therapy, anchoring the third largest life sciences hub in the U.S.,” said Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation President and Chief Executive Officer Bill Tompkins. “We are home to innovation and life-saving treatments that make a positive global impact. And we are thrilled that AstraZeneca continues to grow and invest in new technologies here in Montgomery County, which will ultimately lead to greater economic viability for our region. We join Governor Moore, County Executive Elrich, and all of our partners and stakeholders in congratulating AstraZeneca for their continued expansion.”

AstraZeneca focuses on the discovery, development, and commercialization of prescription medicines in oncology, rare diseases, and biopharmaceuticals, including cardiovascular, renal and metabolism, and respiratory and immunology. Based in Cambridge in the United Kingdom, AstraZeneca operates in more than 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide. To learn more, visit astrazeneca.com.