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Azzur Group Breaks New Ground

Cleanrooms on Demand™ facility to serve Bay Area life sciences and biotech

Alameda Post - Azzur Group’s new Cleanrooms on Demand facility is located at 1955 North Loop Road on Bay Farm Island. Photo Maurice Ramirez.
Azzur Group’s new Cleanrooms on Demand™ facility is located at 1955 North Loop Road on Bay Farm Island. Photo Maurice Ramirez.

Azzur Group’s Cleanrooms on Demand™ (COD) celebrated their groundbreaking in Alameda on Thursday, July 20. The new facility, located at 1955 North Loop Road on Bay Farm Island, is the company’s sixth cleanroom facility. Other locations are in Waltham and Burlington, Massachusetts; Vista, California; and Raleigh, North Carolina, with construction underway at one additional facility in Devens, Massachusetts, serving other centers of the pharma industry.

Cleanrooms are necessary for the manufacture of many modern technologies, including semiconductors and biotechnologies that require consistent, controllable environments. The environment in the cleanroom is completely managed, including the air pressure, composition, and the presence of any particulates, to prevent any defects being introduced during manufacture. Cleanroom environments can also prevent the escape of gasses and particulate materials.

Alameda Post - Senior Vice President of Global Operations Dan Dernbach speaks with Councilmember Tracy Jensen, as Senior Director of San Francisco Operations Omri Paran talks with Councilmember Trish Herrera Spencer. Photo Maurice Ramirez.
Senior Vice President of Global Operations Dan Dernbach speaks with Councilmember Tracy Jensen, as Senior Director of San Francisco Operations Omri Paran talks with Councilmember Trish Herrera Spencer. Photo Maurice Ramirez.

Alameda City Councilmembers Trish Herrera Spencer and Tracy Jensen attended and spoke at the event, as did Steven Baiter of the East Bay Economic Alliance. Madlen Saddik of the Alameda Chamber and Economic Alliance, and Patricia Finn of California Life Sciences.



Dan Dernbach, Azzur’s Senior Vice President of Global Operations, introduced the program and was followed by Omri Paran, Senior Director of Operations for the facility.

“What does this mean for our community?” asked Paran. “Just as there have been successive revolutions in agriculture and other areas that have made it a good time to be alive, we’re on the cusp of another revolution. Right here in the Bay Area, RNA technologies, cell and gene therapy, and therapeutic proteins are changing the way medicine is practiced.”

Councilmember Jensen said, “We need organizations like Azzur to help develop new therapies, to develop new medications, things that are going to save lives and improve lives. …There’s no better place for you to do it than here in Alameda. Our quality of life is great. Very proud and happy to welcome you.”

Councilmember Herrera Spencer and Chamber CEO Saddik expressed similar sentiments about the company’s core values. “I did look up your core values… the first one is to help others. That’s Alameda, right?” Herrera Spencer pointed out. “The last one is to have fun. OK, right? That’s us. You chose the right place. …This is going to be your favorite location.”

Saddik thanked the Azzur leadership team for choosing Alameda, saying, “Your core values—putting others first, having courage to take action, taking personal responsibility, and having fun—they align with our community’s beliefs. Our island is the hidden gem in the Bay Area to live, work, and play.”

Alameda Post - Azzur executives and employees, their development partners, Alameda officials, and business leaders gather in front of the building to celebrate the groundbreaking with a ceremonial shovel. Photo Maurice Ramirez.
Azzur executives and employees, their development partners, Alameda officials, and business leaders gather in front of the building to celebrate the groundbreaking with a ceremonial shovel. Photo Maurice Ramirez.

After the speeches, company executives and employees, their development partners, city officials, and business leaders gathered in front of the facility to celebrate the groundbreaking with a ceremonial shovel. Then attendees were invited to take a hard-hat tour of the still-under-construction building that will become the new Cleanroom on Demand facility serving the Bay Area.

Cleanrooms on Demand

Azzur’s COD provides turnkey Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) support to the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device industries with a range of “wraparound services,” including on-demand cleanroom facilities, materials management, storage, asset management, and supply chain solutions. Azzur Group plans to open additional COD facilities in locations across the country over the next several years.

Cleanroom licensing is a novel but proven approach to pharmaceutical trials and manufacturing that enables pharma companies to continue focusing on scientific discoveries even during economic downturns like those now being experienced in California. Azzur’s presence in Alameda intends to relieve some of the financial strain of the life sciences companies that are feeling the pinch from layoffs in the San Francisco area. It enhances Alameda’s growing reputation as a city to watch for innovators in medical treatments and therapies.

Alameda Post - Senior Director of San Francisco Operations Omri Paran leads a tour inside the facility while it is still being constructed. Photo Maurice Ramirez.
Senior Director of San Francisco Operations Omri Paran leads a tour inside the facility while it is still being constructed. Photo Maurice Ramirez.

“Cleanroom licensing as an operations model enables fast-growing, entrepreneurial life sciences companies to scale their businesses responsibly,” said Ravi Samavedam, Chief Innovation Officer for Azzur Group. “Licensing avoids the expense of facility ownership and maintenance and allows companies to concentrate on scientific innovation and early-phase cGMP manufacturing.”

Adam Gillitt is the Publisher of the Alameda Post. Reach him at [email protected]. His writing is collected at AlamedaPost.com/Adam-Gillitt.

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