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Bioscience startup moves out

April 14, 2016
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Empirical Bioscience
Empirical Bioscience's manufacturing lab will be based at a 6,000-square-foot facility in southeast Grand Rapids. Courtesy Empirical Bioscience

A local bioscience startup that makes products that support DNA research has hatched.

Empirical Bioscience said this week that it’s moving from its space in the GR Current incubator in downtown Grand Rapids to a 6,000-square-foot facility in Grand Rapids’ Millbrook neighborhood.

The new space, located at 2007 Eastcastle Dr. SE, will house a manufacturing laboratory, balance offices, shipping and receiving and administrative offices.

“The new site will enhance our ability to service custom manufactured products to client specifications and provide our customers with the highest quality products and services possible,” said Des O’Farrell, president, Empirical Bioscience.

Empirical had been working out of GR Current, a SmartZone incubator with a focus on the life sciences sector, since it first entered the industry.

Lease deal

Empirical Bioscience is leasing the facility with a custom build out to tenant specifications, having entered into an agreement with the space’s landlord.

The company has a buy-out option on the facility as well.

Empirical will occupy the entire building, with about 40 percent of the space dedicated to the manufacturing laboratory.

Creating “knowledge base”

The new space will allow Empirical Bioscience to increase its capacity to design and make high-grade PCR reagents and enzymes for the research, education and biotech markets.

The reagents and enzymes produced by Empirical are used to facilitate scientific research and experiments in the study of DNA.

“This is a new technology in West Michigan, and it will create a long-term knowledge base in commercial and molecular biology,” O’Farrell said.

The bigger space will also allow Empirical Bioscience to continue growing its staff. The company recently added two new team members and is anticipating additional hires as the facility comes online during the second and third quarters of 2016.

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