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Governor Rendell Says Hundreds of Jobs Coming to York County as Medical Device Manufacturer Prepares to Expand

Saturday, October 24, 2009 General News J E 4
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HARRISBURG, Pa., Oct. 23 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Governor Edward G. Rendell announced today that nearly 250 new jobs will soon be coming to York County now that state investments have helped to convince a global manufacturing company to expand there.

Unilife Medical Solutions, a safety medical device maker, announced in April that it was relocating its global headquarters from Australia to a leased facility in Lewisberry, but projected demand for its products from pharmaceutical companies and other healthcare industry leaders has compelled the company to transfer its operations to a larger facility in York County.

"The expansion of Unilife's global headquarters in York County is great news for Pennsylvania, and the company's decision to locate its primary manufacturing operations here is a huge testament to the York County workforce," said Governor Rendell. "Major projects like this don't happen by accident, and Unilife's relocation and expansion serves as the latest proof of the success of our economic development efforts."

Unilife will build a new facility at a yet-to-be-determined site in York County to serve as its corporate headquarters and house its primary manufacturing operations.

Unilife manufactures healthcare safety products, like its pre-filled syringe, which can help protect people from needle-stick injuries and other unsafe injection practices.

The multimillion dollar project will create 241 new jobs by the end of 2012 and it will retain 87 existing employees who will move from its Lewisberry facility to the new building, upon completion.

The Governor said the commonwealth's involvement with Unilife dates back more than four years, when an Australian trade representative from the Department of Community and Economic Development's international business office first met with company officials.

"As an emerging global leader for innovative safety medical devices, we are committed to helping enhance the international credentials of Pennsylvania as a place for pharmaceutical and healthcare companies to do business," said Alan Shortall, Unilife Medical Solutions CEO. "We are very pleased that the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has chosen to offer Unilife this significant funding package, and we are fortunate to be working with a government that displays the leadership and forward-thinking needed to support companies such as Unilife."

Unilife Medical Solutions Limited is an Australian publicly-listed designer, manufacturer and supplier of innovative safety medical devices. Core areas of its business activity are the pharmaceutical market for pre-filled syringes, the healthcare market for sharps safety devices, and medical device contract manufacturing. To support its U.S. expansion plans, the company is preparing to undertake a listing on NASDAQ.

Unilife has built a significant business relationship with sanofi-aventis to support the industrialization of its Unilife pre-filled syringe. Pilot production of the syringe began at the Lewisberry facility last year; full commercial production will occur at the company's new facility in York County. Unilife will also manufacture the Unitract 1mL range of syringes at the facility for use in healthcare facilities and by people with diabetes.

The project was coordinated by the Governor's Action Team, economic development professionals who serve as a single point-of-contact for businesses that are considering locating or expanding in the state.

Pennsylvania is providing the company with a $5.2 million funding package that includes a $500,000 opportunity grant, a $2 million loan from the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority, a $2 million grant through either the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program or the Infrastructure Facilities Improvement Program, $200,000 in job training assistance and $482,000 in job creation tax credits.

Since Governor Rendell took office in 2003, GAT has successfully completed 1,179 projects, resulting in commitments to create 125,521 new jobs and retain 297,425 existing positions. The commonwealth has offered more than $2.2 billion in assistance for these projects, which will leverage more than $16 billion in additional investment.

For more information about Unilife Medical Solutions, visit www.unilife.com

For information on the Governor's Action Team, visit www.NewPA.com or call 1-866-466-3972.

Media Contacts:

Luke Webber, DCED; 717-783-1132

Michael Smith, Governor's Office; 717-783-1116

SOURCE Pennsylvania Office of the Governor
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