Mondelez International, which makes Cadbury chocolates, has invested around USD 15 million to build a global Research, Development and Quality (RDQ) hub in neighbouring Thane. The investment is a part of the company's global strategy to develop an RDQ at nine advantaged locations across the globe over the next two years, Mondelez said in a statement. "With a focus on chocolate and beverages, this centre will combine the high-end skills of our local team with global learnings and best practises to develop products and processes for Mondelez International globally," Mondelez India Foods Managing Director Deepak Iyer said. "This is another milestone in our company's continued commitment to invest, make and innovate in India as we create technical and scientific jobs as well as bring in cutting edge technology to support our global business," Iyer added. It will start construction of the Thane facility in December, and the site is expected to be fully operational by mid-2018. The new facility, to come up at the site of the previous science and technology centre and the India technical centre, will employ over 150 scientists, engineers and other specialists, who will focus on developing technology platforms for chocolates and beverages, consumer science, packaging and cross-category productivity, said the statement. "These hubs will enable improved efficiency, effectiveness and accelerated project delivery, while the increased scale across key markets will provide rapid access to changing consumer needs and trends," Mondelez International Executive Vice President RDQ Rob Hargrove said.