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29 April, 2014 - 10:51 By Tony Quested

AstraZeneca commits to Cambridge despite Pfizer overtures


AstraZeneca bosses and the owners of the Cambridge Biomedical Campus insist they are pushing ahead with plans for a new AZ corporate HQ and strategic R & D centre in the UK technology cluster with the creation of 2,000 jobs – despite an attempted takeover bid by Pfizer.

Liberty Property Trust and Countryside, the developers of the Cambridge Biomedical Campus, today said they were proceeding with groundworks for the new facility.

AZ add that they are committed to the Cambridge strategy and intend to continue moving staff from London and Cheshire into three temporary facilities in the cluster this year.

That’s despite Pfizer pushing for a takeover that could end up at around $109 billion – the biggest in UK corporate history.

While Pfizer were rattling sabres AstraZeneca moved to calm shareholders’ nerves with a ‘steady-as-we-go’ approach.

AstraZeneca told Business Weekly: “The board remains committed to executing the strategy announced by AstraZeneca in March 2013. This includes the establishment of a strategic R& D centre and corporate HQ in Cambridge by 2016.

“With regard to the temporary facilities, Pascal Soriot our CEO confirmed again at last week’s quarterly results that we are moving many of our people to Cambridge this year, in temporary facilities, laboratories and offices at the Da Vinci building (Melbourn Science Park), Cambridge Science Park and Granta Park.

A statement prepared for Business Weekly by the developers of the Cambridge Biomedical Campus was equally emphatic. “Liberty and Countryside understand that AstraZeneca is still proposing to relocate its UK R & D and global corporate headquarters to the Campus.

“We are proceeding with the groundworks for the new facility which includes the design and construction of the Circus and Piazza, a major new piece of public realm which will become the centrepiece of the growing Campus.”

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