Sophia : Galderma will open a world dermatology centre
The subsidiary of L’Oréal will create on the eight hectares of the ZAC of the Funel the largest world dermatology research centre. It is an investment worth 400 million francs.The news were announced during a meeting of the Symisa (Joint Union of Sophia-Antipolis) : Galderma plans to open the largest world dermatology research centre. This company, set up in 1981 by L’Oréal and Nestlé, in the sector of the research in dermatology, is already established in Sophia-Antipolis. Galderma R&D Sophia (the former CIRD, Dermatological International Research Centre) gathers 280 people in its laboratories.The most coveted site in SophiaGalderma has been considering an important expansion on the site for more than two years in order to double its surface and to increase the number of its employees to reach 400 people. Thus, it had applied for a planning permission to set up a second millennium centre at the Lucioles. This permission was delayed for long because of problems linked to town planning.This time, it is not on the site of the Lucioles that the new setting up is planned, but on the last big site of the research park : the eight hectares of the Zac Funel, in the town of Biot. This beautiful site is located near the design centre opened by Toyota, looking out onto the sea. It was particularly planned to create the « Maison of Sophia » there. This site, coveted by the Malongo company at a time, for a coffee centre, was the subject of a lively controversy in June 2000, which was named « the Danone case ». The giant of the food-processing industry, which planned to set up its research and development centre (500 people on 20,000 square meters), had been refused at first the site of the Funel, before having an offer during summer. Finally, Danone had chosen Palaiseau.Beginning of works in early 2002The mission of the R&D centre of Galderma in Sophia is to offer innovative molecules, which can be recognized internationally. The centre had particularly discovered the « miracle » molecule, the adaptalene, which allows to fight efficiently against the acne. The drug, which includes this molecule is now marketed in 45 countries.The new project of Galderma on the French Riviera is even more ambitious than the expansion which was initially planned : an international research and development centre, with 22,000 square meters of buildings, for an investment worth 400 million francs. Works should start in early 2002, with a first part which should be done for 2004, date of the opening of the centre. It would be the largest R&D centre linked to research in dermatology worldwide.This will relaunch the health sector on the French Riviera, which has been lagging behind the successful NTIC (new technologies of information and communication) sector for three or four years.