Top biomed firm to make medical devices in Singapore

Biotronik to produce devices such as pacemakers and defibrillators at Kaki Bukit facility

One of the world's leading makers of cardiovascular medical devices is setting up its first Asia-Pacific manufacturing facility here.

Biotronik, a privately owned multinational biomedical technology company headquartered in Berlin, will invest a sum in the double-digit millions over the next two to four years in its facility in Kaki Bukit.

It expects to hire more than 200 highly skilled staff for its new plant, which will begin operations in the second half of this year.

Biotronik has had its Asia-Pacific headquarters in Singapore since 2012, but it handled sales and marketing functions.

Besides its manufacturing and corporate base in the German capital, the firm also has manufacturing sites in Switzerland and the US.

THE HEART OF THE MATTER

We were missing a stable manufacturing site in Asia. Singapore's stability and highly skilled workforce made it an attractive strategic choice.

MR ERIK TRIP, Biotronik's general manager of Asia-Pacific manufacturing.

The new Singapore site was the result of a decision to increase the company's global manufacturing base and to position itself close to growing markets in the Asia-Pacific region, Biotronik said.

Components from the Singapore factory will be incorporated globally in vascular intervention products, such as stents.

The Singapore facility will also make cardiac rhythm management devices such as pacemakers, defibrillators and heart failure devices.

"It's important for us to spread operations across the globe, and before this we were missing a stable manufacturing site in Asia. Singapore's stability and highly skilled workforce made it an attractive strategic choice," said Mr Erik Trip, the company's general manager of Asia-Pacific manufacturing.

He did not reveal the exact amount being invested in the site here but said Biotronik has "long- term plans for Singapore" and is also "planning to invest heavily in building up a local workforce".

The company, which has a presence in more than 100 countries, does not have plans to set up production facilities elsewhere in the region.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 15, 2016, with the headline 'Top biomed firm to make medical devices in S'pore'. Print Edition | Subscribe