Phase III expansion facility reaches capacity

KU Innovation Park’s newest facility, Phase III, has reached a major milestone – it’s completely full. The 66,000-square-foot facility opened in August 2022 with a dedication ceremony that featured KU Chancellor Doug Girod, Sen. Jerry Moran and Gov. Laura Kelly, among others. The building is a mix of both lab and office space and features a large meeting space that has hosted many business and community events.

As of March 31, the Park now has 72 companies within its system. Those companies employ 709 people and have a combined annual payroll of $47 million. Phase III is home to 11 companies in a variety of industries, including engineering and architecture, bioscience and animal health, and government. They include:

Archer Daniels Midland (ADM)
Headquarters: Chicago, Ill.

ADM is a global leader in human and animal nutrition, as well as agricultural origination and processing. ADM’s presence at the Park is focused on research operations, as ADM has a partnership with KU’s Center for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis.

Argental Global
Headquarters: Auckland, New Zealand

Argenta has grown with the Park, starting in Phase I and now expanding to customized lab space in Phase III. They are a leading contract research organization (CRO) and contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) that specializes in animal health. The Park is home to the company’s U.S. pharmaceutical sciences operation.

Burns & McDonnell
Headquarters: Kansas City, Mo.

Burns & McDonnell is a multidisciplinary engineering and architecture firm. Their presence at the Park is with KDOT’s Eisenhower Legacy Transportation Program (IKE). This 10-year program addresses highways, bridges, public transit, aviation, short-line rail and bike/pedestrian needs across the state of Kansas.

Clark & Enersen
Founded: Lincoln, Neb.

Clark & Enersen was new to the Park when they moved into their office space in Phase III. The multidisciplinary design firm employs a range of world-class architects, engineers, interior designers and landscape architects. One of the firm’s specialties includes science, research and technology facilities.

Headquarters: Dublin, Ireland

One of the Park’s earliest resident companies, IdentiGEN fuses DNA and data intelligence to deliver animal and food knowledge. Through their DNA TraceBack® technology, they enable precise tracking of meat and seafood products through the supply chain. IdentiGEN was recently acquired by Merck.

JEO Consulting Group
Founded: Wahoo, Neb.

JEO Consulting Group is a full-service engineering, architecture, surveying and planning firm with locations across five states. They expanded in Lawrence to better serve their Kansas clients and partners.

Kansas Department of Transportation
Headquarters: Topeka, Kan.

The Park is home to the Kansas Department of Transportation’s bridge and road design groups. KDOT opened its office at the Park in 2016 to strengthen its research relationships with the University of Kansas, improve access to talent and be close to KU’s Structural Testing and Student Project Facility.

Ligand Pharmaceuticals
Headquarters: San Diego, Calif.

Ligand Pharmaceuticals invests in the clinical development and commercialization of groundbreaking medicines. They manage a large portfolio of over 85 partnered commercial and development stage programs. Ligand joined the Park in 2011 with their acquisition of CyDex Pharmaceuticals, a KU spin-off founded by Park board member Dr. Val Stella.

Phoreus Biotech
Headquarters: Olathe, Kan.

Phoreus Biotech, founded in 2018, specializes in nanocarrier technology. Their proprietary Branched Amphipathic Peptide Capsules (BAPC®️) and Corralling Amphipathic Peptide Colloids (CAPCä) enhance precision drug delivery for genetic vaccines, cancer therapies, and biopesticides, benefiting human, animal, plant, and environmental health.

Headquarters: Lawrence, Kan.

ViroVax is a biotechnology company focused on the research and development of vaccines, adjuvants and therapeutics to protect and treat people from infectious diseases. One of the adjuvants discovered, developed and tested at the Park was used in India’s indigenous COVID-19 vaccine, COVAXIN, and has been administered to millions of people around the world.

VDC Specialists
Headquarters: Lawrence, Kan.

Founded in Lawrence in 2018, VDC Specialists has become an industry leader in virtually designed construction services. VDC focuses on building constructible models that will enhance efficiency in the construction process for contractors. With its expansion into Phase III and an expansion into the Dallas market, VDC is one of the Park’s fastest-growing companies.