Ellume: Brisbane-Made COVID-19 Rapid Home Tests Delivered to the US

Ellume, the Brisbane-based biotech company with a facility in Richlands, has fulfilled its first shipment of COVID-19 home testing kits to the United States. The company aims to make 20 million testing kits for America, which has the highest number of cases in the world.

Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning Steven Miles recently visited the Richland production laboratory, where more than 300 workers have been ramping the manufacturing process of 200,000 testing kits a day.

The government has helped fund Ellume under the Essential Goods and Supply Chain program, allowing the biotech firm to develop export quality testing kits and procure state-of-the-art equipment for its production line. 

“The funds from the State Government will greatly assist in upscaling manufacturing to meet the growing demand for Ellume’s products, providing greater supply security,” Dr Sean Parsons, the company’s CEO and Founder said. “This is world-leading and life-saving diagnostic testing technology, created and manufactured right here in Queensland.”

In December, the diagnostic kit received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It is the first of its kind to be granted the EUA in this pandemic.

“Ellume is another successful Queensland manufacturer rolling up its sleeves to fight the global pandemic and employing hundreds of Queenslanders to do so,” Mr Miles said. “We have the best manufacturers in Queensland, and we will always back them, as we continue our economic recovery and create jobs.”

After the U.S. deal, the company plans to expand its manufacture and distribution to Europe in late 2021 and has been exploring a partnership with another local company focused on medical diagnostic technology.

Ellume to Open $50-Million Facility in Richlands to Escalate COVID-19 Tests

A medical diagnostics company is set to open its $50 million manufacturing facility in Richlands. The new Ellume site at 19 Macgregor Place will focus on producing 15 million tests a month for COVID-19, flu and tuberculosis.

About 450 jobs will need to be filled, including assembling testing kits, before the facility open in the middle of October. These testing kits will be for export to the United States. 

Ellume currently has 100 staff at its main site in East Brisbane. Founder Dr Sean Parsons said that they have been developing and improving their world-class technology “to meet global demands” since the swine flu epidemic in 2009. 

Dr Parsons said that the company convinced its American partners that setting up a facility in southeast Queensland was more viable than a manufacturing site in the U.S.  

Photo Credit: Google Maps

Richlands is close to arterial corridors and connections in airports in Wellcamp and Brisbane. With many local skilled workers, Dr Parsons said that southeast Queensland could become the leading business site when it comes to COVID-19 test productions.

The company developed an Access Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Test, which runs on a portable digital device called Access eHub. This diagnostic tool that promises results in less than 15 minutes or three minutes for strong positive cases.

Access eHub could handle eight samples and process at least 30 samples within an hour, allowing laboratories to run independent tests more efficiently. 

“The Access eHub platform offers a new combination of speed and scale that marks an important step towards decentralised mass testing that health authorities all over the world have been urgently seeking,” Dr Parsons said.