Covance blueprints $150M CRO expansion, ready to hire 465

Back in 2008, Covance ($CVD) inked a 10-year CRO deal with Eli Lilly ($LLY), buying out some of the pharma giant's labs in central Indiana for $50 million and agreeing to provide early-stage research support in a pact that helped create a new template for strategic clinical research agreements. Now Covance is reportedly preparing to invest $150 million in its Indiana lab complex, with plans to build a new facility and refurbish others as it prepares to add 465 new hires.

The AP reports that Covance is slated to pitch the Hancock County Council July 11 on the expansion as it seeks out some economic development incentives. Up for grabs is an added $29 million in annual payroll and a big expansion that would come close to doubling the 565-person workforce already on the sprawling 450-acre site.

If the blueprint wins the needed incentives and the development goes through, it will be Covance's second expansion. The CRO spent $15 million on a new biotech facility. Eli Lilly is a big customer, but Covance also undertakes animal studies for other clients at their Indiana facility.

- here's the story from the Indianapolis Star
- read the AP report

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