MBI Pilot Biomanufacturing Center’s Grand Opening: Jon Weaver’s Remarks
On October 18, 2023, MBI commemorated the Grand Opening of our pilot Biomanufacturing Center with the help of Secretary Yvonne Hao, the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, the Worcester Delegation, MassBio, and our wonderful event attendees. Our new Center has 10 flexible lab/office suites with 18′ tall ceilings built for startup companies working on early-stage biomanufacturing, process development, and clinical trial research. This Center is the first-of-its-kind in Massachusetts, just as MBI was the first life science incubator in the Commonwealth.
In this blog post, you will find the remarks of our President & CEO, Jon Weaver.
“Thank you to everyone for being here today. This is a big day for MBI and for everyone in our life sciences and economic development ecosystem here in Central Mass and across the state.
When we opened our StartUp and ScaleUp Centers here on Briden Street, back in 2020, we thought it would take 3 years to fill the space. Amid a pandemic, startup companies flocked to the building and we filled it within 10 months. In that short time, this building has served 33 companies that have raised over $280 million and created over 130 jobs. These companies are the future of medicine and the future of our economy.
The opening of the Pilot Biomanufacturing Center will support our companies as they make the transition from research to manufacturing, or as we always say from ‘Concept to Clinical Trials’. With the opening of this space, we can now truly achieve that mission. Today, we’re thrilled to announce the opening of this facility and that we are 30% full with 2 new companies starting to move in.
The first company to move in is Enable Life Sciences. Founder Rachit Ohri started Enable in our smallest lab at our Barber Avenue facility with a mighty team of MLSC funded interns. Rachit was able to scale through our system and will now be the first company to occupy this new facility as he brings an innovative NK Cell media to market. We are so proud of Rachit and his team.
This space is a milestone not just for MBI, our companies, and Central Massachusetts, but for the Commonwealth as a whole. As the life sciences sector grows and changes across the state, we have so much opportunity to increase our competitiveness on the international market. This project furthers our efforts to make Central Massachusetts the global leader in biomanufacturing. Our lab market is bursting at the seams, we have new biomanufacturing projects underway, and Worcester has been recognized as a top 15 life sciences talent hub, independent of Boston. Most states are lucky to have one on the list. Massachusetts has two in the top 15.
This project wouldn’t be possible without partnership. I want to thank the Commonwealth, our Worcester Delegation, and the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center for its $3.5 million investment. We are grateful for your continued commitment to building a regionalized ecosystem and are proud to partner with you.
I want to thank our Blue Beaker capital campaign contributors who are instrumental to the success of this building including the Morgan and Grenon families, our proud graduate, Biocytogen, and more to be announced soon.
I want to thank our construction team including Timberline, LeftField, Avid Engineering, JS Mortimer, Ci Design, Mercier Electric, and many other subcontractors.
I want to thank our event sponsors and hope you will consider supporting these companies who are contributing back to our biotech community.
I want to thank our Board and our Team, who had the vision and dedication to bring this project together.
Thank you to everyone for being here today to help us celebrate this milestone.”