DRUGS firm Redx Pharma is creating more than 100 jobs under a Government funding scheme.
The Government today announced the latest winners of £1bn in grants under its Regional Growth Fund (RGF) to boost the British economy.
Among them is rapidly-growing Liverpool drugs company Redx – which will use its £4.7m in funding to create 119 jobs at a new research and development project.
Redx’s "anti-infectives" arm will develop antibiotics to treat superbugs such as MRSA and C.Diffifile as well as anti-viral treatments for conditions such as flu, hepatitis C and HIV.
Overall, the Government has allocated £77m of RGF cash to 21 business projects in the North west which it says means 19,720 jobs "will be created or safeguarded".
That includes investments in car makers Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) and Vauxhall which between them employ some 7,000 people in Halewood and Ellesmere Port.
Meanwhile, Wirral council has received cash to help it grow the offshore wind sector, while regeneration body Liverpool Local Enterprise Partnership plans to use its grant to launch its own funding scheme for expanding small firms.
Redx is seen as the rising star of Liverpool’s biotechnology sector and is set to be the first company to move onto the multi- million-pound biocampus alongside the new Royal Liverpool Hospital.
Business secretary Vince Cable, who visited Redx yesterday, said: "It’s manufacturing. It’s hi-tech. It’s innovative, it’s where this country’s future is."
Redx, as with the other winners of RGF money, says the government cash will help it attract more private funding.
Dr Cable said: "The thing that’s often missed (about RGF) is that for every pound of taxpayer’s money that goes in, we’ve had £5 or £6 in private investment."
Redx has already started expanding thanks to earlier RGF funding. It won £5.9m last year to launch Redx Oncology which is developing cancer treatments.
Redx Oncology now employs 55 people and will employ 127 by the end of next year.
JLR says it will use its grant for three "major projects" in Halewood and the West Midlands including research and training.
It said: "This grant will enhance the significant investment of £2bn already being made by Jaguar Land Rover in the UK in 2012/13."
Sci-Tech Daresbury said it would use its £10m grant to support existing plans to expand the site and create 15,000 skilled jobs over the next 20 years.
Developer Langtree is a partner in the project. Its chief executive, John Downes, said: "The investment will be used to accelerate our development plans and to continue the rapid growth already seen over the last two years, creating high quality commercial and laboratory space and ultimately creating thousands of high value jobs."