Real Estate - Commercial

Thermo Fisher To Explore Sale Of Former PPD HQ

By Staff Reports, posted Apr 11, 2022
Thermo Fisher Scientific is considering selling its downtown office building, formerly the headquarters of PPD, which the company acquired late last year. (Photo by Johanna F. Still)

Four months after officially acquiring Wilmington-headquartered PPD, Thermo Fisher Scientific announced it is exploring opportunities to sell Wilmington’s tallest building. 

The scientific service leader is embarking on a multi-year effort, which includes plans to seek new office space in Wilmington. The shift “will enable this business to better match current and future workspace needs with flexible work models,” Thermo Fisher shared in a press release Monday afternoon. 

Thermo Fisher’s move is indicative of an international trend whereby companies are reassessing their use of office space in the context of rising remote capabilities. The company is currently in the early stage of considering new office space opportunities, according to a release, and “remains committed to Wilmington.” 

When the $17.4-billion acquisition first closed in December 2021, the company shared no changes to facilities or locations were planned – though many real estate experts had speculated the building could serve alternative uses, given the often empty parking decks. Thermo Fisher even had PPD's signature purple lettering removed from the building's façade less than two weeks after the acquisition. 

The 12-story downtown building functioned as PPD’s corporate headquarters since it opened in 2007, and marked the beginning of an economic revival of the northern waterfront area downtown. 

David Johnston, Thermo Fisher’s senior vice president and president of clinical research, said a significant percentage of the company’s 1,700 Wilmington employees and prospective candidates prefer a hybrid working model. This involves coming into the office for collaboration purposes, “which necessitates more flexible workspaces and fewer dedicated offices.”

“We have been proud of our Wilmington building since it opened in 2007 and, as we consider the evolving needs of our workforce and business, we believe this is the right time to establish a new location to serve our colleagues, customers and visitors,” Johnston said in a release.

PPD was an early adapter of the remote working model and found the flexibility fostered high productivity during the pandemic. 

“Our commitment to Wilmington as an employer and our involvement in the community remain stronger than ever and, through this relocation, we expect to continue to be a Wilmington growth story for years to come,” Johnston said. ​

Ico insights


Web awstaffpic2020 1 132245438

The 2024 Luncheon for Literacy featuring Special Guest Jason Mott

Alesha Edison Westbrook - Cape Fear Literacy Council

Paving the Way to Better City Streets

Tony Caudle - City of Wilmington

The Impact of a Growth Mindset

John Monahan - Vistage

Trending News

Endowment Chooses Firm To Guide Search For Next Leader

Emma Dill - Apr 8, 2024

Port Of Wilmington To Receive Diverted Cargo From Baltimore

Audrey Elsberry - Apr 8, 2024

Wilmington Design Agency Wins 10 National Awards

Staff Reports - Apr 9, 2024

George Sworn In As Cape Fear Community College Trustee

Staff Reports - Apr 9, 2024

Casselberry Hired As Safety Director At Thomas Construction

Staff Reports - Apr 9, 2024

In The Current Issue

EMS Program At CFCC Receives Accreditation

CFCC recently announced its emergency medical services program has achieved accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Hea...

Harjo Leads Indigent Defense

Since Jennifer Harjo opened New Hanover County’s Public Defender’s Office in 2008, she has strived to ensure her clients receive their Const...

Surgery Center Recognized By Orthopedic Organization

Brunswick Surgery Center recently received four certificates of excellence from accreditation organization DNV Healthcare....

Book On Business

The 2024 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!



2023 Power Breakfast: Major Developments