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Dexcom Grew Rapidly in AZ

Dexcom revenue, production has skyrocketed over its four years in Arizona

 

    • In 2016, continuous glucose monitoring system manufacturer Dexcom (DXCM) announced it was opening an advanced manufacturing facility in Mesa, Ariz. with the expectation it would eventually create “more than 500” jobs. Four years later, it employs more than 1,000 employees in Arizona.
    • Revenue has skyrocketed in recent years. After making $573 million in 2016, it was up to almost $1.5 billion at the end of 2019. Half the production comes from the Mesa facility, including Dexcom’s G6 glucose monitoring system that launched in 2018.
    • Dexcom has opened one wing of its controlled environment manufacturing spaces and is working on completing its second, which will allow further production of applicators that need to be produced in environments with specific cleanliness and air filtration requirements.
    • A new regional distribution center is under construction in Mesa. The facility, larger than 400,000 square feet, is expected to open in the first half of 2021.

From ‘unknown’ to global

In June 2016, Dexcom dropped a press release announcing the company, which develops and manufactures continuous glucose monitoring systems, would open a facility in Mesa, Ariz. that would create more than 500 jobs.

That was underselling its impact. Four years later, Dexcom has hired more than 1,000 employees in Arizona, opened up an expansion for a controlled environment manufacturing space and is in the process of opening a second, and construction is underway for a regional distribution center in Mesa that is expected to open in the first half of 2021, said Mesa site general manager Jim Kasselman.

 

 

“Here at Dobson facility, we went from 40 employees three and a half years ago to where we have more than 1,000 today …”

 

 

With half the manufacturing taking place in Mesa and half in San Diego, where headquarters is located, revenue increased by 43% during 2019 to almost $1.5 billion, which is more than two and a half times more than the $573 million it made in 2016.

Dexcom’s global reach has increased overseas and has patients in areas including Europe, the Pan-Asia region, Japan, Australia and South Korea.

“We have definitely gone from being an unknown within the Valley to being a known manufacturing entity,” Kasselmann said. “It’s even easier today to attract the talent that we need compared to two, three years ago when we were relatively new in the Valley. We have been able to definitely secure the talent and the number of employees that are needed, as evidenced by our production growth.”

Arizona stood out to Dexcom as an expansion location over Texas, Utah and California for three primary reasons:

  • The physical proximity to San Diego makes it simple for for leadership and technical subject matter experts at headquarters to support this high-production site, and employees can travel back and forth with ease for new products and other trainings.
  • The business-friendly nature of Greater Phoenix and its low real estate costs were enticing.
  • The workforce and advanced manufacturing pipeline that exists in Greater Phoenix makes it easy to find talent.

Dexcom has formed partnerships with Arizona State University (ASU) and Mesa Community College (MCC) to locate, attract and train potential hires.

“We’ve gotten some excellent hires from the university, as well as operating an intern program with them,” he said. “We’ve had collaborations with Mesa Community College as well, so those are the two main bodies from the education side.”

This local talent and the region’s dedication to speed-to-market sparked growth and hiring at faster rates than anticipated.

“Here at Dobson facility, we went from 40 employees three and a half years ago to where we have more than 1,000 today,” Kasselmann said. “How quickly we could stand this facility up, the support that we’ve gotten from the region to get our facility built and the expansions taken care of, and our ability for technical subject matter experts to travel back and forth have all been key to our ability to speed the production ramping of this facility.”

Dexcom's growth

400000

sq. ft. distribution center under construction

1000+

employees have been hired in Arizona

261.8%

revenue increase from 2016-2019

Expansion in Greater Phoenix

With the launch of Dexcom’s G6 Continuous Glucose Monitoring System last year, production has spiked. The company didn’t just avoid coronavirus-related slowdowns; it managed to accelerate. By the middle of this year, the company had already surpassed prior production volumes.

With continued expansion, Kasselmann expects production to become more dependent on the Mesa facilities based on their size.

 

“We will continue to bring our emerging technological advances — the high-technology manufacturing techniques — into Arizona.”

 

The company is in the process of adding two controlled environment rooms to its Dobson facility. These areas have higher air pressure and filter the vast majority of particles in the air to ensure cleanliness for the applicator that is inserted into a patient to read blood glucose levels. The first manufacturing space, in the eastern wing of the Arizona facility is operational, and the third one is under construction in the western portion.

Mesa will become an even more important hub for the global company upon completion of its 400,000-square-foot distribution center, which is being built by Mesa Gateway Airport.

Since choosing Mesa as their expansion location, Kasselmann has received assistance from government and agencies that enabled speed-to-market, allowing for timely review of design plans supporting our facility expansion projects.

“They’re very crisp with the reviews of our submissions. They don’t languish, so when we have a submission for a particular permit, and we’ve given them our packet, they get right after it … we get very good turnarounds,” he said.  “They’re definitely, here in the state of Arizona and in the Phoenix valley, very keenly aware of removing obstacles that can slow down development activities.”

This will help as Dexcom continues expanding after landing in the region. Development on its G7 product, which will be a higher-capability continuous glucose monitoring system, is underway.

“We will continue to bring our emerging technological advances — the high-technology manufacturing techniques — into Arizona,” he said. “Employees that have chiefly utilized manual means to build our products will be exposed to higher-technology pieces of equipment and methodology. We’re continuing to upgrade the skill level of the employees that come to Dexcom.”

Dexcom is one of more than 800 businesses that the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC) has supported over the last 30 years. To learn more about how GPEC can support your business expansion or relocation plans, or to receive a complimentary market analysis and operational cost comparison, contact us today.

 

Image credit: City of Mesa, AZ