Governor Patrick and the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center Celebrate the Opening of the New Vertex Facility in Boston

February 4, 2014

Press Release

BOSTON – Tuesday, February 4, 2014 – Governor Deval Patrick today joined Vertex Pharmaceutical’s leadership, industry stakeholders and state and local officials to celebrate the grand opening of the company’s new 1.1 million-square-foot global headquarters at 11 Fan Pier Boulevard in Boston. Construction began in June 2011, and a 15-year lease for the space was signed in May 2011.

“The opening of Vertex’s corporate headquarters in our Innovation District is an exciting day for Boston, for the Commonwealth, and for the millions of people around the world who stand to benefit from Vertex’s amazing work,” said Governor Patrick. “This is an example of how playing to our strengths in the life sciences creates good jobs and better health now and for the next generation.”

The new facility, encompassing two connected buildings, is designed to stimulate collaboration and attract new talent to Vertex. It includes over 75 small informal collaboration spaces and a 500-seat cafeteria as a central gathering space, and is accessible by multiple public transportation options. The new facility also includes 3,000 square feet of classroom and laboratory space for use by the Boston Public Schools, including Vertex’s partner schools Excel High School and Boston Green Academy, as well as other community groups.

Vertex is a global biotechnology company that aims to discover, develop and commercialize innovative new medicines so people with serious diseases can lead better lives. Founded in 1989 in Cambridge, Vertex today has research and development sites and commercial offices around the world in the United States, Canada, Europe and Australia. Vertex employs approximately 1,300 Massachusetts employees today, and 1,800 employees worldwide. Vertex has created more than 800 new jobs in Massachusetts over the past 10 years.

“Making medicines is a team sport that requires hundreds of people working together for many years, and these buildings were designed to bring all 1,300 of our Massachusetts employees together in one space for the first time,” said Jeffrey Leiden, M.D., Ph.D., Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Vertex. “As a company committed to discovering new medicines, I can’t think of a more inspiring environment – the Innovation District -- in which to do business."

In May 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Vertex’s first medicine, a treatment for hepatitis C. In January 2012, Vertex received FDA approval for a new treatment for cystic fibrosis. Vertex received European approval of their medicine for cystic fibrosis in July 2012.

"This is a great day for our city and state," said Mayor Martin Walsh. “Vertex brings more jobs, more development, and more people, all generating economic growth in the Innovation District and city of Boston. But more importantly, Vertex has an impact on patients and people that can't be counted in economic numbers alone. This impact is measured in longer lives and a higher quality of life for people."

Under Governor Patrick’s leadership, Massachusetts is a global leader in all stages of business development in life sciences industries, from discovery to commercialization. Through the Massachusetts Life Science Center, Massachusetts is investing $1 billion over 10 years in the growth of the state’s life sciences supercluster. These investments are being made under the Massachusetts Life Sciences Initiative, proposed by Governor Patrick in 2007, and passed by the state Legislature and signed into law by Governor Patrick in 2008. The MLSC’s mission is to create jobs in the life sciences – biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, diagnostics and bioinformatics — and support vital scientific research that will improve the human condition.

“We are excited to celebrate the official opening of Vertex’s new facility,” said Dr. Susan Windham-Bannister, Ph.D., President & CEO of the MLSC. “This new office and lab space will enable Vertex to continue its groundbreaking R&D efforts in discovering, developing and commercializing innovative and in some cases life-saving new medicines in areas such as Hepatitis C and Cystic Fibrosis, right here in Massachusetts. Vertex has played a significant role in making Massachusetts the global leader in life sciences, and today is a great day for the company and the Commonwealth.”

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