Locate in Kent has played a vital role in encouraging US-owned Abbott to increase its investment in Kent over the last four years, which has lead to the creation of 200 jobs in the county.

The company choose to expand an existing plant in Kent due to the experience and expertise already existing at that location. The availability of highly skilled work force available in the area, the proximity to other manufacturing sites within Europe (Ireland and Germany), and easy accessibility through London City airport and Heathrow International also played a part in the company’s investment in Kent. Abbott’s headquarters is based in Chicago and the company is the fourth largest pharmaceutical firm in the world.

The Dartford site manufactures a range of diagnostic products used for testing for infectious diseases and employs about 350 staff. It is also responsible for the initial stage manufacture of 94 products and 30 finished products, which are used in testing for a wide range of conditions including cancer and cardiovascular problems and thyroid and metabolic disorders as well as testing for Hepatitis and HIV in blood donations. The company’s large manufacturing plant at Queenborough on the Isle of Sheppey was acquired by UK pharmaceutical firm Aesica.

Locate in Kent worked closely with the South East England Development Agency and the Department for Trade and Industry to facilitate the company’s expansion in Kent. Abbott’s investment reaffirms Kent’s position as a key bioscience location and as the home of one of the South East’s foremost life science clusters.