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Kristina Slattery
Business Development

Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development

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Andy Beshear
Old Capitol Annex
300 West Broadway
Frankfort, KY 40601
Jeff Noel
2024-06-27 05:01:34
For Immediate Release
Brandon Mattingly

Gov. Beshear: Thermo Fisher Scientific To Invest Nearly $48 Million, Create 69 Kentucky Jobs With New Facility in Covington

Project expands lab operations, eventually creating 250 jobs across two facilities

FRANKFORT, Ky. (June 27, 2024) – Today, Gov. Andy Beshear highlighted further momentum within the state’s health care industry as Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. announced plans to locate a new lab operation in Covington, investing nearly $48 million and creating 69 additional Kentucky jobs.

“The commonwealth is seeing tremendous growth in its health care and life sciences sectors, providing high-paying, quality jobs for Kentucky residents across the state,” said Gov. Beshear. “I am thrilled to see Thermo Fisher once again choosing Kentucky to locate and expand its business. I look forward to the company’s continued success here in the commonwealth as this investment adds to Northern Kentucky’s economic growth.”

The company plans to expand its central laboratory operations in Kentucky dedicated to accelerating pharmaceutical and biotech customers’ delivery of safe, effective medicines to patients. The PPD clinical research business of Thermo Fischer Scientific will expand its sample management and biorepository operations in a new 65,000-square-foot space in Covington, enabling further capability expansion at its existing site in nearby Highland Heights. Thermo Fisher’s $47.8 million investment is expected to create more than 250 new jobs across the two sites over the next eight years, with renovation and construction anticipated to begin later this year.

The business has operated a central lab operation in Highland Heights since 2002, and today it includes central lab services, biomarker operations, sample management and testing to support new therapeutics, including vaccines and cell and gene therapy products. The renovation of an existing building on West 38th Street in Covington will significantly expand the business’ labs footprint.

“Our central lab plays a vital role in helping our customers make timely, efficient and informed decisions about their clinical trials and ensure patient safety,” said Leon Wyszkowski, president of the analytical services division at Thermo Fisher Scientific. “Our expansion will enhance their ability to advance life-changing research. We are excited to expand into Covington and grow our operations in Highland Heights as a vital part of our global labs capabilities serving our customers. We value the support of state and local officials as we continue to hire talented colleagues to advance our company’s mission to enable our customers to make the world healthier, cleaner and safer.”

The PPD clinical research business provides global contract research services to pharmaceutical, biotech, medical device and academic organizations. The business’ clinical development offerings include clinical trial services spanning early to late-stage trials, as well as peri- and post-approval research, while laboratory services include advanced lab testing and central lab services. The company’s clinical research business has conducted trials in more than 100 countries.

Kenton County Judge/Executive Kris Knochelmann noted the region’s ideal location for a company like Thermo Fisher to invest in and expand their business: “With the Covington Life Science Lab and the Commonwealth Center for Biomedical Excellence being located in Covington amidst a cluster of life sciences companies, Kenton County is a natural location for an expansion of PPD. We are happy that PPD is continuing to invest in Northern Kentucky and provide important clinical research solutions to its customers from our community.”

Covington Mayor Joe Meyer highlighted the project’s fit with the city’s goals and positive impact on the workforce: “This company and this announcement bring to fruition an array of Covington strategies, goals and investments, including the city’s announced focus on life sciences as a target sector some five years ago and the industrial revenue bond we approved to support the construction of developer Josh Niederhelman’s 146,000 square feet of industrial space in Latonia – the first new industrial space here in decades. Our work continues to pay off for Covington taxpayers and the region’s workforce, and we welcome Thermo Fisher Scientific to Latonia, a Covington neighborhood.”

BE NKY Growth Partnership CEO Lee Crume looks forward to the job opportunities the new facility will bring: “With a projection of nearly 50% employment growth between 2020-2025, the life sciences industry continues to be one of the fastest growing in Northern Kentucky. We are excited the PPD clinical research business of Thermo Fisher Scientific has chosen to expand again in the Cincinnati region, and we are thrilled to welcome new high-paying jobs for Northern Kentucky residents.”

Thermo Fisher’s investment and job creation build on the best four-year period for economic growth in state history.

Since the beginning of his administration, Gov. Beshear has announced more than 1,000 private-sector new-location and expansion projects totaling nearly $32 billion in announced investments, creating more than 54,700 jobs. This is the highest investment figure secured during the tenure of any governor in the commonwealth’s history.

The robust job creation has been accompanied by rising wages across the commonwealth. The average incentivized hourly wage in 2022 and 2023 topped $26 in consecutive years for the first time.

Gov. Beshear has announced some of the largest economic development projects in state history, which have solidified Kentucky as the electric vehicle battery production capital of the United States: Ford Motor Co. and SK On’s transformative $5.8 billion, 5,000-job BlueOval SK Battery Park in Hardin County; AESC’s $2 billion, 2,000-job gigafactory project in Warren County; Toyota’s $1.3 billion investment in Scott County; and INFAC North America’s $53 million investment in Taylor County, among others.

The Governor’s administration also secured the largest General Fund budget surplus and Rainy Day Fund, as well as the most jobs filled in state history. Last year, Kentucky set the record for the longest period with the lowest unemployment rates in state history.

Kentucky also secured rating increases from major credit rating agencies Fitch Ratings and S&P Global Ratings, and Moody’s Investors Service upgraded Kentucky’s credit outlook from stable to positive.

In March, Site Selection magazine ranked Kentucky third nationally and first in the South Central economic development projects per capita in its 2023 Governor’s Cup rankings. In April, Site Selection placed Kentucky second in the South Central region and top 10 nationally in its 2024 Prosperity Cup ranking, which recognizes state-level economic development agencies for their success in landing capital investment projects.

Gov. Beshear announced a “Supply Kentucky” initiative with the goal of boosting job growth, reducing costs and providing more security in the supply chains of our Kentucky companies.

To encourage investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) today preliminarily approved a 10-year incentive agreement with the company under the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based agreement can provide up to $1.9 million in tax incentives based on the company’s investment of $47.8 million and annual targets of:

  • Creation and maintenance of 69 Kentucky-resident, full-time jobs across 10 years; and
  • Paying an average hourly wage of $42.50 including benefits across those jobs.

Additionally, KEDFA approved Thermo Fisher for up to $250,000 in tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA). KEIA allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing.

By meeting its annual targets over the agreement term, the company can be eligible to keep a portion of the new tax revenue it generates. The company may claim eligible incentives against its income tax liability and/or wage assessments.

In addition, Thermo Fisher can receive resources from Kentucky’s workforce service providers. Those include no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job-training incentives.

For more information on Thermo Fisher Scientific, visit

A detailed community profile for Kenton County can be viewed here.


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