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EMD Serono plans to increase Billerica work force as it ups its US headcount

Looking to take advantage of Greater Boston’s expertise in life sciences, EMD Serono Inc. said Thursday that it is in the process of expanding its US workforce by 20 percent, with much of the growth targeted for Billerica.

From mid-2012 until the end of 2014, EMD Serono projects that its US head count will grow by 20 percent.

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At this time, the company said it has 800 employees in Massachusetts and slightly more than 1,000 nationwide. During 2013, the company said it expects to add in excess of 125 new positions in Massachusetts.

EMD Serono is a subsidiary of Merck KGaA, a German company that makes drugs and chemicals. EMD Serono has local offices in Rockland and Billerica.

In a statement, EMD Serono president James Hoyes, said,“The Greater Boston area remains one of the top locations for state-of-the-art drug development. We are confident that by increasing hiring in the US, we can continue to foster innovation and a culture anchored in new possibilities.”

Chris Reidy can be reached at reidy@globe.com.
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