By: Claire Wilson. Last Updated: December 2023

Image: Pfizer

Pfizer is the world’s largest research-based pharmaceutical company. Its research headquarters are located in Groton, Connecticut, USA but their operations span the globe.

Pfizer develops and produces vaccines and medicines for a range of conditions in the areas of oncology, infections and infestations, cardiology, ophthalmology, neurology and psychiatry. The company has operated in Ireland for over 50 years and currently has 3 manufacturing plants located there.

In this article, you’ll find…

Overview of Pfizer Worldwide

  • Total Revenue 2022: $100.3 billion
  • Estimated R&D Spend 2022: $11.4 billion
  • Global Number of Employees 2022: 83,000

The company was first established in 1849 as a fine-chemicals business in New York by cousins Charles Pfizer and Charles Erhart and has grown to its current size through both pipeline development and acquisition.

Pfizer has treatments in many prominent disease areas and therapies in most high-growth markets including oncology, infections and infestations, cardiology, ophthalmology, neurology and psychiatry.

Its current top-selling product is its Covid 19 vaccine, Comirnaty. Sales of that product reached $37.8 billion in 2022, helping push Pfizer’s annual revenue from $81 billion in 2021 to over $100.3 billion in 2022.

Ref: Pfizer Inc Annual Report 2022

Pfizer in Ireland

Pfizer was one of the first pharmaceutical companies to move into Ireland, in 1969.

To date, their total capital investment in Ireland exceeds $8 billion and they now employ approximately 5,000 people across 5 sites in Cork, Dublin, and Kildare. This makes them one of the largest pharmaceutical sector investors and employers in Ireland.

Their manufacturing operations include active pharmaceutical ingredients, solid dose pharmaceuticals, sterile injectables, vaccines, biopharmaceuticals and the BioNTech Pfizer covid 19 vaccine, Comirnaty. In addition to manufacturing, Pfizer’s Irish operations include shared services, R&D, treasury and commercial operations.

2022’s Most Attractive Employers Index Ireland ranked Pfizer as number 1 in the categories of engineering and natural sciences professionals.

Overall rating by their employees 2023 (source):

Image of 4 gold stars

Pfizer in Cork

  • Employees in Cork: 700
  • Activities: API Manufacturing

There has been a Pfizer plant on the Ringaskiddy site since 1969. The site has three organic synthesis plants and a new product testing laboratory.

The company describe the site as a…

“multi-award-winning manufacturing facility [that] is key to the Pfizer business and plays a critical strategic role in new global products and launches”

(Pfizer.com)

As well as manufacturing of bulk pharmaceuticals for export around the world, the site also works alongside Pfizer Global Research & Development to scale up new products for regulatory approval and launch.

Pfizer Ringaskiddy won the Health and Safety award at the Pharma Awards 2022.

Click here to see our full county guide for Cork.

Pfizer in Dublin

  • Employees in Dublin: 3,000+ (over 2,400 within the Grange Castle manufacturing site)
  • Activities: Biologics manufacturing; shared services; R&D; treasury; commercial operations

Pfizer has 2 commercial and business sites at Ringsend and Citywest in Dublin, but it also has the Grange Castle manufacturing site.

The Grange Castle site (previously owned by Wyeth) is one of the company’s leading biotechnology manufacturing sites. It represents the largest investment in a pharmaceutical manufacturing plant in Ireland, with a total investment of €1.8 billion. Opened in 2005, the facilities cover more than 1 million square feet making it “one of the largest integrated biopharmaceutical plants in the world”.

Grange Castle is responsible for producing a wide range of biologics and vaccines (including finished vaccine products in pre-filled syringes and the company’s Covid-19 vaccine). The site also manufactures products for clinical trials.

The Quality Control laboratories in Grange Castle provide support to other Pfizer manufacturing sites around the world and there are significant research and development activities happening here as well.

In December 2022, Pfizer announced a €1.2 billion capital investment in the Grange Castle site. The investment, which is Pfizer’s biggest expansion investment to date in Ireland, will see a new facility built on the site premises that will double the capacity for biological drug substance manufacturing at the site. This expansion is expected to create a further 400-500 jobs at Grange Castle. For more information, see the “The Future of Pfizer in Ireland” section below.

Click here for our full county guide for Dublin.

Pfizer in Kildare

  • Employees in Kildare: 950
  • Activities: Solid dose pharmaceutical manufacturing

Pfizer established the Newbridge, Kildare site in 1992. After years of ongoing investment (including over €350m since 2006 alone) the site now covers 1 million square feet, making it one of the largest solid dose pharmaceutical manufacturing sites in Europe.

Over 80 products are currently manufactured here and then exported to more than 100 countries around the world.

The Future of Pfizer in Ireland

In November 2020, Pfizer announced a €300m investment in Ireland that will see 300 jobs created across their sites at Cork, Dublin, and Kildare.

The new jobs will come as a result of an increase in manufacturing and laboratory capacity and recruitment for those roles was expected to take 2-3 years.

In December 2022, Pfizer went on to announce a massive $1.2bn capital investment in their Grange Castle, Dublin site. Once built, the new facility will double the biologic drug substance manufacturing capabilities. The company’s largest single investment in Ireland to date is expected to bring 400-500 permanent new jobs once completed.

“this major additional investment, adding further drug substance capacity to its already substantial Irish operations and jobs, underscores the strategic importance of Ireland in Pfizer’s global operations. It is proof of the company’s future commitment to Ireland and testament to Ireland’s continued attractiveness as a location for investment.”

– IDA Ireland Interim CEO, Mary Buckley.

How to Get a Job With Pfizer in Ireland

If you already have experience in the pharma or medical device manufacturing industries, you can head straight over Pfizer’s career page and see the current Pfizer vacancies in Ireland.

If you have some science, quality, or engineering qualifications/work experience, check out our specialist conversion courses that bridge the gap between your current knowledge and the technical information required to work in this highly regulated industry:

For all other backgrounds (including sales, retail, hospitality, etc), check out our Conversion Course into Pharmaceutical Manufacturing. This course helps you take the transferable skills acquired in any other industry and combines them with essential technical knowledge and job-hunting skills, to make you an ideal candidate for entry-level pharma manufacturing jobs. (Note: NO science or engineering knowledge or experience is needed!)