The first three tenants have signed for space at a BioHub building at AstraZeneca's Alderley Park site in Cheshire.
It is hoped the hub will help soften the blow of the company's decision to relocate its research & development facility from Alderley Park to Cambridge.
The BioHub building is intended to act as a collaborative research and development centre – with Redx Pharma, Blueberry Therapeutics and Imagen Biotec the first companies to sign up.
Redx Pharma, which is based in Liverpool, is to create 120 science-based jobs at the new facility.
Blueberry and Imagen are both smaller companies.
In addition to the three companies moving to the site, BioCity, a Nottingham-based operator of bioscience business incubation space, has been appointed as operator of the facility for AstraZeneca, supporting new tenants at the site.
Cheshire East Council has been campaigning to "foster growth" of the life-science sector in Cheshire East and the wider region since AstraZeneca announced it March that it would be relocating some 1,000 staff to Cambridge and a further 600 to its Macclesfield site.
Councillor Michael Jones, leader of Cheshire East Council, said: "I said back in March, when AstraZeneca announced their restructuring, that we needed to accelerate our plans for a new Bio Science Park and Incubator, as part of a drive to foster growth of the Life Science sector in the region – this is the start of this process.
"We are convinced that through our plans for a bio/pharma R&D cluster at the site we can create more jobs through smaller, more diverse companies."