Jazz Pharmaceuticals to increase Irish staff numbers

Dublin-headquartered pharma company bringing new drugs to market this year

Jazz Pharmaceuticals chief executive Bruce Cozadd: “We fully intend to have strong acquisitions going forward.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Jazz Pharmaceuticals chief executive Bruce Cozadd: “We fully intend to have strong acquisitions going forward.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

 

Dublin-headquartered Jazz Pharmaceuticals intends to increase its headcount in Ireland by 10 per cent as it brings to market new drugs to deal with narcolepsy and sleep apnoea.

The company is actively recruiting to increase its 150-strong headcount both at its global headquarters in Dublin and its manufacturing plant based in Athlone.

It comes as Jazz gears up to file for regulatory approval in Europe by the end of this year for a drug to treat excessive sleeping in patients with narcolepsy and for those with obstructive sleep apnoea.

While narcolepsy is an orphan (ie relatively rare) disease, with about 170,000 patients in the US with the disease, obstructive sleep apnoea is considerably larger.

Speaking to The Irish Times after the group’s agm last week, chairman and chief executive Bruce Cozadd said the company was “growing pretty much across the board” as it increases its spend on research and development this year to $200 million, or about 12 per cent of revenue.

Turnover

The pharma company, which targets orphan diseases, has publicly guided that it expects turnover to reach $1.9 billion (€1.65 billion) this year buoyed by growth in new products and its existing stock.

Listed on the Nasdaq, Jazz also has a clinical trial under way for patients with Parkinson’s disease suffering from excessive sleepiness while the company’s pipeline is also targeting an expansion of the availability of its drugs.

Additionally, the company will launch a treatment for adult acute myeloid leukaemia – a cancer of the blood and bone marrow – later this year in Europe having recently received a positive opinion on the treatment from the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use, a division of the European Medicines Agency.

“Our existing drugs that are on market, plus our R&D pipeline, should produce good ongoing growth for the company,” Mr Cozadd said. “In addition to that, we’ve a track record of bringing additional drugs into the company through acquisitions and partnerships. Because the company has good profitability and cash flow and a strong balance sheet.”