A PHARMACEUTICAL firm and a cyber security company have expanded their business and workforce since moving into new facilities in the North-East.

Northumbria Pharma and Tekgem have moved into Discovery iZone, the new incubation space within Discovery 1, at NETPark in Sedgefield.

NETPark is managed by Business Durham, the economic development arm of Durham County Council and is home to some of the world’s fastest-growing science, engineering and technology companies.

The Discovery iZone has been created to complement the existing NETPark Plexus facility, and to provide companies with specialist laboratory, clean room and office space so they can develop prototypes, scale-up and manufacture on site.

Following a £394k investment, including a £197k incubation grant from the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) through the Local Growth Fund, Discovery 1, NETPark has increased its capacity with two 600sq ft combined office and laboratory spaces and a 1000sq ft class 10,000 clean room built to ISO7 standards.

Northumbria Pharma, a pharmaceutical company specialising in the research, development, manufacture, licensing and marketing of unique and vital pharmaceutical products, has moved quickly to take space at the Discovery iZone together with associated offices and labs totalling 6,500sqft.

Paul Watson, co-founder and research and development director at Northumbria Pharma, said: “We’re thrilled to have been able to move into the Discovery iZone as it has enabled us to continue to grow the company, and expand our team. We now employ 24 staff and are able to manufacture the products we develop in-house now that we have access to a specialist clean room, which means we can deliver high quality affordable products that create meaningful benefits to patients and healthcare professionals."

Tekgem, an industrial cyber security company, relocated from the Wilton Centre in Redcar to the Discovery iZone in November 2019 and are the first cyber security company to join NETPark.

The company, which specialises in securing critical assets and infrastructure for industrial automation and control systems within the engineering and manufacturing sectors, has grown exponentially since moving to NETPark and now has ten permanent members of staff.

Ian Gemski, founder and director of Tekgem, said: “NETPark was the perfect location to relocate to for numerous reasons including having fantastic facilities to a very high standard, a campus feel which our young staff base really like and the opportunity to network and collaborate with the other companies."