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MilliporeSigma Establishes Sheboygan, Wisconsin, Membrane Production Facility

MilliporeSigma, the U.S. and Canada Life Science business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, a leading science and technology company, started construction at its lateral flow membrane production facility in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. The project is expected to create 60 jobs.

The new facility is supported by a $136.7 million contract award from the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), on behalf of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Lateral flow membranes are a key component in rapid diagnostic test kits for a variety of applications, including Covid-19 testing, according to company officials.

"Our purpose is to positively impact life and health with science, and today's ground-breaking exemplifies this commitment by adding physical capacity and expanding our regional network to meet the growing needs of our customers and ensure supply chain security," said Matthias Heinzel, Member of the Executive Board of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, and CEO Life Science. "This new, state-of-the-art facility will support the surge in demand experienced by our global in-vitro diagnostic manufacturing customers."

Once built, the lateral flow membrane facility will be MilliporeSigma's first facility in the United States capable of producing diagnostic-grade membrane. Its location further supports the company's competitive market advantage with improved supply security and reduced lead times for global customers. The lateral flow membrane production line complements the global capacity network of the Life Science business sector of Merck KGaA, by adding redundant capabilities to its two production lines in Cork, Ireland, thereby mitigating supply chain risks.

"From COVID-19 rapid testing to cancer therapies, the work MilliporeSigma does helps promote the health and safety of our families and communities while creating good jobs for hardworking Wisconsinites, and I am glad to be celebrating their success today," said Governor Tony Evers. "In addition to creating 60 new jobs in Sheboygan, this new facility will provide a major step forward in expanding domestic diagnostic testing as the company's first lateral flow membrane production facility in the U.S., ensuring our state and country are ready to tackle any public health crisis that comes our way now and into the future."

The Life Science business sector of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, said it is continuing to invest in products and technologies across its portfolio that are key to manufacturing novel therapies, vaccines and diagnostics. All expansions and investments are part of an ambitious, multi-year program to increase the industrial capacity and capabilities of the Life Science business sector to support the growing global demand for lifesaving medications and to make significant contributions to public health.

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