An Irish-owned pharmaceutical company is to create 350 jobs over the next five years in Loughrea, Co Galway.

Chanelle Group has expanded operations with the opening of a new manufacturing facility and 90 graduate positions will come on stream immediately.

It is the largest Irish-owned manufacturer of pharmaceuticals and currently employs 500 people.

It was founded by Galway vet Michael Burke in the early 1980s and makes both animal health products and human medicines.

Michael Burke, founder and Managing Director of Chanelle Group

This morning, Tánaiste Simon Coveney officially opened a new €10m facility for the manufacturing of a topical treatment, called 'Spot On', used globally to protect dogs and cats against harmful parasites.

Further construction will begin next year on a facility for medicinal products in the US market.

Chanelle Group develops 15 to 20 new products every year, which has been a key factor in the substantial growth of the company.

An investment programme of €86m will be rolled out over the next five years with the creation of 350 jobs.

There are currently 91 open positions in operations, research and development, and engineering.

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