Cork-based SimoTech is to create 70 jobs over the next two years as the process automation services and manufacturing IT systems company for the pharma and biotech sector continues its international expansion.

SimoTech said the majority of the jobs will be in its Carriagaline base, with 20 to be created oveseas.

The company has secured its first contract in Singapore and is working with a large vaccine provider on a major capital project in the APAC region.

The new jobs will be created in the areas of Process Automation, Computer System Validation, Labs Informatics, IT Infrastructure and Project Management.

Pat Desmond, the chief executive of SimoTech, said the company is an integral player in the global supply chain for pharmaceutical products, and in engineering the vital technologies that support their manufacture.

"Over the last three years, demand for automation expertise has allowed us to expand at a rate of 30% each year, doubling our client base. We have trebled our revenue to €14m in 2020 and doubled our staff numbers in the last three years," Mr Desmond said.

Mr Desmond said the company's new roles are just the first step, as it looks at expanding its footprint in the years ahead across Europe, the US and Asia, while still building from Cork.

"By embracing smart manufacturing technology, we are now able to provide 24/7, remote services to our clients, anywhere in the world. During the pandemic, that allowed these corporates to keep their plants operating, even when site visits were not possible due to restrictions," the CEO said.

"By providing these vital services remotely, we are also able to expand our business abroad while still supporting job creation at home in Ireland," he added.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin said that SimoTech is a shining example of the type of technical innovation Ireland has to offer.

"Biotech and pharma are crucial sectors for the Irish economy and having home-grown companies of the calibre of SimoTech is essential to that success," Mr Martin said.

Martin Corkery, Regional Director for the South and South East at Enterprise Ireland, said news of the new jobs is a sign of major growth both in the company and in Ireland's life sciences sector, which has demonstrated remarkable resilience throughout the pandemic.

"SimoTech is a great example of a true Irish success story, which has gone from strength to strength since it was founded just ten years ago," he added.