Expansion in pipeline for Borders drugs firm

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The pharmaceutical company formerly known as ProStrakan is to expand its Scottish headquarters after unveiling healthy full-year revenues.

Kyowa Kirin International (KKI) said it planned to increase its Galashiels head office capacity by about 40 per cent.

The news came as KKI reported record turnover of £251 million for 2016, up 13 per cent on the year before. KKI is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Japanese life sciences company Kyowa Hakko Kirin, which acquired ProStrakan in 2011.

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The firm said it had acquired a ten-year lease on a 10,000 square feet building adjacent to its existing base in Galashiels Business Park and had already gained planning permission for the construction of a link facility. It will create a combined total footprint of some 35,000 sq ft.

Once construction of the link has been completed, KKI plans to refurbish its existing building. Work is expected to be complete by the autumn following which the company will have created a “state-of-the art” headquarters complex capable of housing 200 staff.

Tom Stratford, president and chief executive of KKI, said: “This development underlines our commitment to Galashiels and to Scotland as an excellent location from which to operate a truly international pharmaceutical business.

“The business is growing at pace and we are proud of what we have achieved since joining Kyowa Hakko Kirin in 2011.

“Our turnover has grown from £105m to £251m in that time, overall staff numbers have more than doubled to stand at almost 600 today and we recently filed for European approval of the first of Kyowa Hakko Kirin’s pipeline products.”

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KKI’s property adviser for the project is Eric Young & Co, with design work being undertaken by design consultancy Cubit3D and project management by PMP.

Lucy Alkin-Young, KKI’s office manager, who is project managing the development, said: “We’ve been growing so fast that we were simply running out of room in our existing head office, so the expansion is being welcomed by the whole team.

“Our extended facility will provide us with a headquarters that is appropriate for an international pharmaceutical company.”

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