YORKVILLE — Merz North America will plant deeper roots in Racine County with a $3 million consolidation and expansion that will retain 165 good-paying jobs and create up to 20 more.
Merz North America, headquartered in Raleigh, N.C., operates four sites in Racine County for manufacturing and distributing aesthetics products used by dermatologists, plastic surgeons and neurologists.
Merz plans to consolidate its three leased facilities into one expanded location at 13900 Grandview Parkway. The new site will be home to the company’s particle manufacturing, packaging, professional services and distribution operations.
Operations will continue at the 4133 Courtney St. facility in Blackhawk Industrial Park in Raymond, which Merz owns.
According to Matthew Anderson, vice president of technical operations for Merz North America, the company considered several options, including outsourcing distribution activities and relocating parts of its operations outside of Wisconsin, before deciding to consolidate its operations in Racine County.
“The Wisconsin operation was the leading candidate” for where Merz would continue the operations it started here 17 years ago, Anderson said. With support of a $750,000 forgivable Racine County loan administered by Racine County Economic Development Corp., Merz committed to a $3 million capital investment in Grandview Business Park. The loan is forgivable if Merz makes the capital investment, retains the 165 jobs and creates 20 new ones within three years.
Anderson said the project is about a 30 percent expansion there; construction is to begin Thursday, and Merz hopes to move into the new quarters next spring.
Anderson said the consolidation will increase efficiency of Merz’s Wisconsin operations and fuel the company’s continued growth in Wisconsin.
Merz is a privately held company based in Germany. Globally, Merz specializes in the research and development of drugs for the treatment of neurological and psychiatric diseases and developed the world’s first drug for the treatment of moderate to severe stages of Alzheimer disease.
Locally, Anderson said, Merz manufactures:
Radiesse, a skin filler used by plastic surgeons and dermatologists for smoothing wrinkles and lines.
Coaptite, a product used by urologists for urinary incontinence.
Prolaryn, used to repair damaged vocal cords.
Calcium hydroxyapatite particles which are sold to a global medical device company for manufacturing of bone screws used in surgery. Merz also sells the particles to other small startup medical device companies for 3-D printing of medical products.
Anderson called Merz a “premier place to work.” The company’s local 165 jobs are comprised approximately of 40 percent hourly jobs and 60 percent professional-level.
Merz is also involved in the wider community, Anderson said, with the Homeless Assistance Leadership Organization and food bank as examples.