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Crews preparing for Elanco expansion

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GREENFIELD — Work has begun on an expansion at Elanco that will eventually bring 200 new jobs to Greenfield.

Crews have started preparing the grounds at Elanco for the construction of two new buildings.

A 64,000-square-foot office building will go up adjacent to two existing, identical buildings on the campus. A smaller, 28,000-square-foot addition will be constructed just south of existing buildings B and C, connecting the two. A company representative said construction on both buildings will take place simultaneously and is expected to last 10 to 12 months.

“We have been experiencing a lot of growth,” said Abigail Troyer, global communications. “The size of our current operation is larger than we envisioned several years ago.”

Elanco is in the middle of a period of explosive growth. The animal health division of Eli Lilly and Co., Elanco doubled its sales in five years to $1.6 billion and is expected to double sales again in the next several years.

That’s good news for the parent company. It’s no secret that Lilly is working through several tough years of slim profit margins following the expiration of a number of lucrative drug patents. Incentive packages at the state and local level were crucial for Greenfield to land the Elanco expansion.

“Local and state government did everything that we intended them to do,” Troyer said. “They were great to work with.”

Greenfield City Council approved a 10-year tax abatement on $10.5 million in real property. Property taxes will be phased in over 10 years starting in 2013, which would result in a savings to the company of more than $300,000.

City officials did not hesitate to grant the company’s request. Mayor Dick Pasco said an expanded Elanco presence can only bring good things.

“It’s great for Greenfield,” Pasco said. “They’ll bring new people to the community and some jobs for existing residents.”

With this project, the company has said it will hire an additional 200 employees by 2015.

The 200 new jobs will be administrative positions in departments like company leadership, marketing, manufacturing, operations, finance and legal. The existing facility includes a small laboratory area, but the expansion does not include labs. 

The positions will pay an average salary of $60,000, adding $12 million in payroll. Elanco, a global research company that develops and markets products to improve animal health and production has about 2,400 employees worldwide, with 475 currently in Greenfield. New hiring is expected to grow the number of local employees to 675 by 2015. 

“Elanco is growing and we are looking forward to a future of continuing innovation locally and globally,” Troyer said.

Included in the project is a cafeteria for employees, additional meeting and conference spaces, offices, a second access road, a walking trail and plans to add 300 additional parking spots to the Progress Park campus. The project will take about a year.

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