German science and technology company Merck has opened its newly expanded Life Science distribution centre in Schnelldorf, Germany, which entails €180m investment.

The expansion almost doubled the facility’s size, adding 25,000m2 of functional area, and it employs 470 engineers, and manufacturing and distribution experts.

The site now features equipment for manual down-filling operation and additional space for the distribution of a wide range of products to laboratories and research facilities.

Merck executive board member and life science CEO Matthias Heinzel said: “By combining manual downing filling capabilities with our distribution expertise, our customers will benefit from increased product availability and quicker delivery.

“This is critical to ensuring that medicines reach patients faster, safely, and more efficiently. This is how we do our part to impact life and health with science.”

Merck said that the expansion of its Schnelldorf facility is part of a multi-year investment program for its Life Science business unit.

It aims to enhance its capacity and capabilities to support the growing global demand for critical drugs and to make significant contributions to public health.

Also, it has carried out industrial capacity and capabilities expansion projects in Life Science throughout Europe, China, and the US, investing more than € 2bn, said the company.

Merck’s Life Science business operates more than 50 production and testing sites and 64 distribution centres worldwide and has more than 27,000 employees in 65 countries.

Merck Life Science integrated supply chain operations head Ivan Donzelot said: “With this expansion, Schnelldorf is becoming one of our flagship sites, providing unique end-to-end capabilities for our Life Science customers.

“With the full integration of manufacturing and distribution in one site, our customers can now receive even faster and better service whether they are in Europe or in other regions of the world.”