Global medical technology company BD has announced plans to invest €70m to expand its research and development (R&D) facility in Limerick, Ireland.

The investment will be made over a period of five years to set up new research laboratories and create jobs in engineering and scientific disciplines such as software, electronics, hardware and immunology.

It is expected to create more than 130 new jobs.

BD’s investment is expected strengthen its Limerick R&D facility as a hub for the development of smart, secure connected health and infection monitoring solutions in clinical and non-clinical settings.

The expansion will include the addition of an advanced laboratory, workspaces and technologies to support new innovations.

Through IDA Ireland, the Irish Government is supporting the facility’s expansion project.

BD executive vice president and chief technology officer Beth McCombs said: “Our BD Research Centre Ireland plays an essential role in delivering products and solutions to improve biomedical discovery, the diagnosis of disease and the delivery of care for patients.

“Our partnership with the IDA has been vital to our success and continued expansion. Looking ahead, BD innovation is focused on integrated, digital solutions to empower the smart hospital, enable new care settings and improve chronic disease outcomes.

“Continuing to attract the best and brightest minds in Limerick and across Ireland will be critical to help BD deliver on our purpose of advancing the world of health.”

The BD Research Centre Ireland facility, which was set up in 2017, initially engaged on product and software development, clinical research instrumentation and prototype development.

The facility mainly supported two businesses within the company’s life sciences segment.

As an integral part of the BD research ecosystem, it now supports six out of the company’s nine business units, making advances across the continuum of care.

According to the company, the BD Research Centre Ireland has grown to include centres of excellence in highly relevant specialised disciplines, such as information security, bio-compatibility and toxicology.

BD senior R&D director Padraig FitzGerald said: “Our associates in Ireland play a significant role in advancing solutions across our portfolio, and we’ve added 125 full-time roles in Research Centre Ireland since March 2020 to further our impact.

“With the 130 additional roles and expanded facilities announced today, we’ll be able to further tap into Ireland’s robust talent pool to accelerate innovation fundamental to our growth strategy.”