Deerfield puts up $635M to create New York City biotech campus 

345 Park Avenue South, the building being renovated by Deerfield (RFR)

Deerfield Management is placing a big bet on the New York City biotech scene. The investment group is set to spend $635 million to set up a life science campus in midtown Manhattan, adding capacity in a city that has struggled to establish itself as a biotech hot spot. 

At the 12-story building, Deerfield plans to create 300,000 square feet of life sciences space, more than two-thirds of which will be suitable for wet lab use. Deerfield is now renovating the building, which was previously occupied by the advertising agency Digitas, with a view to bringing the capacity online in 2021.

The project is the latest sign that New York City can address the capacity constraints that have limited its presence in the biotech industry. Backed by an administration keen to turn the city into a biotech hot spot, developers are following the lead of the Alexandria Center for Life Science and adding new capacity.

Deerfield is working with the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) on the project, including through a $30 million investment in a workforce development program. NYCEDC expects the program to support almost 5,000 New Yorkers involved in the city’s life sciences sector. The campus itself is expected to create 1,400 life science jobs. 

“The 1,400 jobs coming to the Life Sciences Campus is just another signal, on top of our numerous hospitals and health care facilities, that the East Side of Manhattan is quickly becoming a top destination nationwide for healthcare and life science jobs,” Carlina Rivera, a New York City councilwoman, said in a statement.

Deerfield shared details of the New York City campus alongside news that it plans to invest more than $2 billion in research and seed funding by 2030. The investor currently manages around $10 billion.