Life Sciences

First Minister announces key investment for Wales during visit to the United States

A major investment and expansion at Zimmer Biomet’s Bridgend site that will create 39 new jobs and safeguard 50 jobs will be announced today (Thursday 8 September) by First Minister Carwyn Jones during his visit to the United States.

Zimmer Biomet’s  £2.5m investment - backed by £700,000 finance from the Welsh Government – will create a European Centre of Excellence for Porous Coating that allows the company to specialize in  porous coating technologies used in the manufacture of orthopaedic implants.

The company’s Bridgend and Warsaw, Indiana (USA) sites are the only two porous coating facilities within the company, and WG support ensured the recently announced expansion is undertaken in Wales.  Zimmer Biomet is headquartered in Warsaw, Indiana.

The First Minister, who described it as excellent news, is in North America meeting and discussing investment opportunities with senior executives of key companies that have significant operations in Wales.

Zimmer Biomet’s UK operation is a Welsh Government Anchor Company employing more than 800  people from all over South Wales at  Bridgend’s Waterton Industrial Estate, where it manufactures a range of hip and knee replacement products that are exported globally.

The First Minister said:

“The investment decision was confirmed today during my meeting in Chicago with Zimmer Biomet. I had the opportunity to reaffirm the Welsh Government’s support for the expansion of their business in Wales.

“It is a key investment that secures the long term sustainable growth of the business in Wales and ensures it will continue to pay a prominent role within this global organisation. It is an exciting time for Zimmer Biomet’s Bridgend facility which is experiencing significant growth and high demand for its products. This expansion will increase its capacity, capability and competitiveness and create highly skilled well paid jobs.

“It’s also particularly good news for patients and healthcare in Wales as the company’s on-going relationship with NHS Wales will help  improve health service delivery and deliver cost savings.”

Bridgend is also home to Zimmer Biomet’s Rapide Theatre Care program, which allows the company to work closely with a number of hospitals in Wales, to make improvements to the delivery of orthopaedic care to patients.  In addition, the company collaborates with Swansea and Cardiff Universities to develop new orthopaedic products that treat patients with a variety of musculoskeletal conditions.

Robin Barney, Zimmer Biomet’s Senior Vice President for Global Operations and Logistics, noted after her meeting with the First Minister:

“It was a distinct pleasure to meet with the First Minister in Chicago.  Zimmer Biomet is proud of its operations in Bridgend.  It remains an important component of the company’s global operations. We truly appreciate the excellent support from the Welsh Government over the years. The company’s recent investments in the Bridgend plant would not have been possible without the Government’s support and without the dedication of the Zimmer Biomet employees in Bridgend.”

Zimmer Biomet also has a comprehensive Welsh-based supply chain that will benefit significantly from this expansion.