- Chemical manufacturing titan 3M plans to invest up to $468 million to expand its healthcare facility in Brookings, South Dakota, over the next three years, the state announced on July 12.
- The first $158 million expansion phase will add 200,000 square feet of manufacturing space, as well as lab and office space, in addition to 16 shipping docks, an 8,000-slot warehouse and lab and office space.
- The expansion will create 65 jobs, Tim Reed, CEO of Brookings Economic Development Corp., told Manufacturing Dive in an email. It is unclear when the expansion will break ground, and 3M declined to provide any additional details.
The 667,000-square-foot Brookings site is 3M’s largest healthcare facility, and has been in production since 1971, per the release. The facility underwent its most recent expansion in 2016, which added 656,292 square feet of space to the site, according to the company’s website.
The plant, which has more than 1,000 employees, manufactures medical, surgical and food safety products, including sterilized dressings and surgical tape, drapes, cold/hot packs and biological indicators.
“3M is proud to have been a part of the growing community of Brookings for more than 50 years,” 3M Brookings Plant Director James Burkhardt said in a statement. “This expansion will help Brookings and 3M support our great employees in making healthcare products used in the U.S. and around the world.”
The Brookings site isn’t the only South Dakota facility that 3M has expanded. The company added 120,000 square feet to its 330,000-square-foot respirator facility in Aberdeen in November 2020. The facility’s expansion came as the COVID-19 pandemic surged, enabling the plant to increase its production of N95 respirators.
Healthcare has been a focus for 3M in its portfolio strategies for years, 3M Chairman and CEO Mike Roman said at the Bernstein 39th Annual Strategic Decisions Conference in May.
Acquisitions along with investments toward R&D and capital expenditures have helped its healthcare business grow, which led to 3M’s decision to spin off its healthcare business. While the chemical manufacturing giant will continue to focus on material science in industrial and consumer end markets, the healthcare business will focus on wound care, IT, oral care and biopharma filtration.
“It’s a diversified healthcare business that is ready to stand on its own as an independent company, and we see that as a way to create the greatest value,” Roman said.
The spinoff transaction is expected to be complete by the end of the year.