Akrimax Pharmaceuticals Purchases Rouses Point Plant

Akrimax Pharmaceuticals announced today that it has acquired the drug product manufacturing and packaging plant in Rouses Point, New York from Wyeth.

The acquisition by Akrimax averts closure of the plant, which has been a fixture in Rouses Point for several decades and one of the largest private employers in the North Country since the 1980s.

Wyeth announced in late 2005 that its operations at the Rouses Point plant would be phased out due to changes in product demand and an assessment of its manufacturing network.
Akrimax is an emerging branded pharmaceutical company led by a core management team of experienced pharmaceutical executives with expertise in development, manufacturing, distribution, marketing and sales of pharmaceutical products.

Akrimax founders, Joseph Krivulka and Leonard Mazur, said they are pleased to bring an experienced pharmaceutical team back to the North Country. In 1993, Krivulka acquired Bertek Inc. on behalf of Mylan Laboratories in St. Albans, Vermont, and as its president transformed it into a leading branded pharmaceutical entity. He served in that capacity until mid-1997.

"It is a thrill to be back in the North Country and with the fine people of the area," Krivulka said. "Together, we will seek to maintain this facility in its rightful place in the North Country economy."

As set forth in the agreement, Wyeth and Akrimax will have a cooperative relationship during a transition period that begins with today's purchase of the site and concludes at the end of 2009. During this transition period, Akrimax will lease the facility back to Wyeth, so that Wyeth can continue manufacturing its products, while Akrimax begins integrating its own products into the facility. Akrimax intends to bring additional business to the facility through contract manufacturing agreements with third parties.

Akrimax intends to fulfill its hiring needs from the Wyeth workforce at the site when the transfer of operations occurs in late 2009. "Our plan is to develop, manufacture and distribute pharmaceutical products from our own product portfolio and other third-part contracts," Krivulka said. "We will accomplish that with the special expertise and knowledge of the people at this terrific plant."

David Champagne, managing director for Wyeth at Rouses Point, said: "Over the past two years, Wyeth's goal was to actively identify a buyer for the site who would continue pharmaceutical manufacturing to maximize the facility's resources and take advantage of the region's strong workforce. We will partner closely with Akrimax on a transition plan that prepares their organization to take over operations of the site in late 2009."

The sale does not include the Chemical Development pilot plant adjacent to the manufacturing site, where Wyeth employs approximately 90 people. Wyeth plans to continue operations at the Chemical Development pilot plant.

The Rouses Point plant is one of the largest private employers in the North Country, with nearly 800 manufacturing jobs. It draws employees from Clinton, Franklin and Essex counties in New York and from several northern Vermont towns.

Garry Douglas, president of the North Country Chamber of Commerce, expressed his gratitude to many community and political leaders who helped contribute to the sale of the site. He said it was an impressive mix of local, regional, state and federal leaders coming together for a common goal.

"Continuation of pharmaceutical manufacturing at Rouses Point by Akrimax fits directly into the strategic efforts of the North Country to ensure that the region retains its pivotal position in the pharmaceutical industry," Douglas said.

Source : www.earthtimes.org

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