Area Development
Sequenom, Inc. will build a state-of-the-art molecular diagnostics clinical laboratory in Wake County, North Carolina, at the NC Biotechnology Center, announced Gov. Bev Perdue. The company plans to create 242 jobs and make a $18.7 million capital investment in the project. The average annual wage for the new jobs is expected to be over $53,721 (not including benefits).

Headquartered in San Diego, CA, Sequenom is committed to improving healthcare through revolutionary genetic analysis solutions. Its MaterniT21 test, expected to launch in the near future, screens for trisomy 21, the most common cause of Down Syndrome.

President Paul Maier said the North Carolina region shows great promise for Sequenom. He lauded its "ideal location" on the East Coast, as well as its "robust like-minded community and commitment to advancing our technologies through education and jobs creation."

"Sequenom is a cutting-edge company working on the forefront of biotechnological innovation," said Gov. Perdue. "They have selected North Carolina as the place to launch the latest advancement in testing for Down Syndrome because our history of strategic investment in education and job training guarantees they have the workforce they need to succeed."

The state's Economic Investment Committee voted to provide a Job Development Investment Grant to the firm. Sequenom is eligible to receive a grant equal to 60 percent of the state personal income withholding taxes derived from the creation of new jobs for each of the nine years in which the company meets annual performance targets.

If the company meets the targets called for under the agreement and sustains them for nine years, the grant could yield up to $2.3 million in maximum benefits.