Government of Canada announces first-of-its-kind biomanufacturing facility in British Columbia

Opening of cutting-edge biomanufacturing facility creates more than 1,000 Canadian jobs, boosting the domestic life sciences sector

BURNABY, BC, July 9, 2024 /CNW/ – The Government of Canada is investing in a robust, dynamic and resilient life sciences ecosystem capable of responding to current and future health emergencies. Since March 2020, over $2.2 billion has been invested to strengthen our country’s domestic biomanufacturing and life sciences capabilities to ensure Canadians have access to the most cutting-edge medical technologies.

Today, the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, is pleased to announce the opening of STEMCELL Technologies‘ state-of-the-art facility, in Burnaby, British Columbia, which has been supported through a $22.5 million investment by the Government of Canada, matched by the Government of British Columbia. This investment has contributed to the construction of a brand new good manufacturing practices (GMP) biomanufacturing facility where STEMCELL Technologies can now manufacture products at the higher regulatory compliance standard required to support clinical trials for cell therapy, tissue engineering, immunotherapy, gene therapy and regenerative medicine, with the ultimate aim of curing cancer and other serious diseases. With the completion of this project, STEMCELL Technologies created more than 1,000 new full-time jobs in British Columbia, far exceeding the project’s target of 675.

The expansion of STEMCELL Technologies’ presence in British Columbia strengthens the province’s status as a biomanufacturing and life sciences hub and will generate more research and development (R&D) and more collaboration with academia. It will also ensure new intellectual property being developed remains in Canada.

This investment is made possible through the Strategic Innovation Fund, a program to attract and support high-quality business investments across all sectors of the economy by encouraging R&D that will accelerate technology transfer and commercialization of innovative products, processes and services.


“Our government is committed to supporting innovation in the life sciences sector to ensure Canadians have access to the most cutting-edge medical technologies to keep them safe. The opening of STEMCELL Technologies’ state-of-the-art facility is another important milestone in achieving a robust domestic life sciences sector in Canada. Through investments such as this, we are securing domestic supply chains and ensuring new intellectual property remains in Canada, while supporting the creation of hundreds of great-paying jobs for Canadian workers.”
– The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry

“Supporting research and development expansion, as well as job growth in diverse and dynamic fields, all across Canada is essential to creating stronger local economies. Leaps in progress often happen because of many smaller steps, on many roads leading to the same destination.”
– The Honourable Terry Beech, Minister of Citizens’ Services

“B.C. is home to the fastest growing life sciences and biomanufacturing sector in Canada. Supporting companies like STEMCELL is helping the ecosystem in B.C. continue to grow and thrive, meaning more good jobs for British Columbians and better access to cutting edge research and therapeutics.”
 – Brenda Bailey, Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Innovation  

“The opening of this new facility is the culmination of a massive multi-year project unprecedented in STEMCELL’s 31-year history that enables us to meet the needs of scientists advancing medical discoveries globally. This biomanufacturing facility strengthens STEMCELL’s positioning as a Canadian anchor company and will allow us to contribute to the life sciences ecosystem for decades to come.”
– Dr. Allen Eaves, Founder, President and CEO, STEMCELL Technologies

Quick facts

  • Canada’s Biomanufacturing and Life Sciences Strategy presents a long-term vision to protect Canadians against future pandemics and other health emergencies and to grow an innovative, competitive domestic life sciences sector.
  • STEMCELL Technologies was founded in 1993 by CEO Dr. Allen Eaves. The company has since grown into a global biotechnology enterprise, producing high-quality cell culture media, cell separation technologies, instruments, accessory products, educational resources, and contract assay services that are used by scientists performing cancer, stem cell, immunology, regenerative medicine, and cellular therapy research globally.
  • Stem cells were discovered in the early 1960s through the work of Canadian scientists Dr. James Till and Dr. Ernest McCulloch at the University of Toronto.

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