Pfizer is planning to establish a multinational network of digital research hubs with a focus on artificial intelligence and big data analytics.
Starting with a new facility in the Greek city of Thessaloniki, the Big Pharma hopes to develop tech that can be incorporated into its development pipeline of medicines and vaccines.
“There is a high concentration of digital talent in Greece,” a company spokesperson told FierceMedTech. “Pfizer plans to partner with universities and local innovation incubators to assemble a world-class team in Thessaloniki—one that will help us further advance our purpose: breakthroughs that change patients’ lives.”
Pfizer expects the facility, the first of six, to become operational in 2020, providing up to 200 jobs. The company has not finalized plans for the remaining locations.
The news was first reported by the Athens newspaper Kathimerini, which said Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis announced the city’s selection during the Thessaloniki International Fair.
Pfizer currently maintains a separate network of “Healthcare Hubs” in different locations across the globe—including New York, London, Berlin, Tel Aviv, Stockholm, Sydney and Toronto—that focus on supporting healthcare and tech startups through the company’s local subsidiaries, plus institutional resources and grants.