Schott, a Germany-based manufacturer of glass and glass-ceramics, has announced an investment of €300m in the coming three years in its pharmaceutical packaging business.
Through the investment, Schott plans to expand its primary business of glass tubing, used as the starting material for pharmaceutical packaging, and also pharmaceutical packaging made of glass and polymer.
The company said that it will significantly increase production capacities in Europe and Asia, in particular.
Schott board of management chairman Frank Heinricht said: “Today, we produce pharmaceutical glass tubing that is converted into approximately 25 billion pharmaceutical packages, such as vials, syringes, ampoules, or cartridges, produced by Schott and other suppliers around the world.
“Due to the strong demand for our products, we intend to further expand this leading position. We are now sending a signal that we are strengthening our presence in Asia.
“As a supplier, we are also contributing further to improving access to safe medication for local populations with these investments.”
In China, to address the demand for its FIOLAX glass tubing, Schott will construct a new plant in Jinyun County, Zhejiang Province. The plant, which will see an investment of a three-digit million amount, is slated to begin production in 2020.
Currently, the company is in the qualification phase in China and according to Heinricht, expectations are that there will be a greater demand for high-quality borosilicate pharmaceutical glass in the medium term.
In India, the German firm will build a new melting tank at its pharmaceutical glass plant in Jambusar, Gujarat with an investment of over €20m to expand its production capacity for FIOLAX.
As part of boosting its pharmaceutical packaging business, the glass manufacturer will expand production capacity at its prefillable polymer syringes manufacturing sites in St. Gallen, Switzerland and Müllheim, Germany.
The German firm claims that its Schott TOPPAC polymer syringes, which are made of cyclo-olefin copolymer (COC), are lightweight and break-resistant. It is particularly appropriate for packaging and storing medications, used in cancer therapy, intensive care, emergency medication, or cosmetic applications, said the company.
In August 2018, Schott announced an additional multimillion-euro investment at its Swiss competence center to expand production capacity for polymer syringes by 50%.