Wacker Biotech GmbH

Jena, Germany

Focus on biopharmaceuticals

The university city of Jena is one of Germany’s main biotech centers. Over the years, major German research centers – such as the Max Planck, Fraunhofer and Leibniz institutes – and an array of biotech and medical-engineering firms have set up in Jena. Industry and science collaborate here very closely. This unique network plays a key role in establishing and enhancing Jena’s reputation as a high-tech and biotech cluster.

So, it was not by chance that the Munich-based chemical company WACKER decided in 2003 to locate its planned biologics activities in Jena. Jena’s Beutenberg Science Campus has long been a center of research into the biotechnological production of recombinant pharmaceutical proteins. In 1999, the renowned Hans Knöll Institute spun off ProThera GmbH, a company specializing in the commercial development and production of biopharmaceuticals. WACKER acquired this promising start-up on January 1, 2005. With Wacker Biotech GmbH, WACKER FINE CHEMICALS (today’s WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS) took a decisive step toward transforming its existing pharmaceutical contract-manufacturing business into the contract-development and manufacturing of therapeutic proteins. Wacker Biotech is now a leader in this sector. For a long time, Wacker Biotech was the only company on Beutenberg Campus. To this day, the WACKER subsidiary maintains close ties to the research centers there.

In 2018, €2.5 million was invested in, among other things, a fully automated fermentation plant including a new bioreactor, a new separator for efficiently isolating cells and a new GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) cell-bank suite. Wacker Biotech’s clients include well-known pharmaceutical and biotech firms that appreciate the company’s expertise and proprietary technologies. The WACKER subsidiary currently employees around 100 employees at its Jena headquarters. In total, over 300 biologists, engineers, MTAs and CTAs work at three sites in Jena and Halle (Germany) and Amsterdam (the Netherlands).

Site-Specific Facts & Figures

  • Name: Wacker Biotech GmbH
  • Site: Jena
  • Employees: approx. 100
  • Products: recombinant proteins (contract manufacturing), pharmaceutical actives for clinical testing and the commercial market
  • The facility is certified in accordance with Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) and complies with the requirements stipulated by the European and US drug-approval authorities (EMA and FDA, respectively)