Eisai Inc., which is based in Teaneck, N.J., opened a new 80,000 square foot manufacturing facility in RTP on Wednesday and added that the company expects to hire as many as 75 new workers.

The new plant is double the size of Eisai’s existing location.

North Carolina Gov. Mike Easley and a host of Eisai officials, including Haruo Naito, its president and chief executive officer, were on hand for the ceremony.

The RTP plant manufacturers Aricept, a drug for the treatment of Alheimer’s disease. Amd Aciphex, which is used to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease. It also is a treatment for an infection which causes peptic ulcers.

“We are delighted to commemorate today’s dedication,” said Larry Kranking, vice president and general manager of the facility. “The new facility will enable us to produce Aciphex® and Aricept® more quickly, meeting the increasing need for these medicines while maintaining our high standards of quality.”

Eisai, which is based in Japan, develops and also licenses products. A major part of the new facility is a packaging area. Eisai expanded the RTP facility by 30 percent in 2001.

Eisai was founded in 1995 and entered the US market in 1997. It reported sales of $1.5 billion in 2002.

Eisai: www.eisai.com