02 Apr Thrive announces BIO grants for strategic partnering
Five regional businesses awarded funds to attend the world’s largest biotechnology convention
Madison Region – Thrive, the economic development enterprise for the eight-county Madison Region, has designated five Madison Region companies for awards in its pilot BIO Partnering Grant program. Grants totaling $9,000 will enable FluGen, Primorigen Biosciences, Shiloh Laboratories, Anteco Pharma, and Scarab Genomics to participate in private meetings and company presentations at BIO 2009 International Convention, scheduled in Atlanta May 18-21.
The annual BIO conference, the largest biotechnology industry event in the world, attracts senior business and scientific leaders from around the world who are seeking alliances and licensing deals. The Madison Region will also exhibit in the Wisconsin pavilion at BIO 2009, to promote the area as a biotechnology center and encourage business partnerships and expansion.
“Based on a recent executive focus group, the Partnering sessions are the best value at BIO -and an effective way for biotech companies to make strategic business connections,” said Thrive Director of Biotech Initiatives, Cheryl Gain. “In the future, Thrive hopes to expand its Partnering Grant program to other events that connect companies with corporate partners and investors.”
Companies indicated that BIO 2009 Partnering activities would enable a range of business goals.
“We hope to engage an audience of potential customers, especially those requiring our cGMP manufacturing services,” said Anteco Pharma President Howard Teeter. The Lodi-based contract manufacturer specializes in freeze drying, formulation, packaging and process development for the pharmaceutical, medical device and nutritional ingredient industries.”
“Our specific goals for BIO 2009 are to further our contacts with domestic and international vaccine manufacturers, to build partnerships which support the further development of our products” said Paul Radspinner, President and CEO of FluGen, an early-stage company developing novel vaccine technologies.
Shiloh Laboratories, launched in 2007 with technologies for improving the growth of stem cells, “will set meetings with those biotech companies committed to regenerative medicine to explore investment and strategic opportunities,” according to company CEO Thomas Primiano. “A grant from Thrive makes all the difference in Shiloh’s attending the conference.” “We will present our patented technology to pharmaceutical companies and contract manufacturers with the intention of developing licensing contracts,” said Tony Pharo, Director of Business for Scarab Genomics. “We haven’t participated in the BIO business forum sessions in the past and are looking forward to this opportunity.” Scarab Genomics has bio-engineered Clean Genome E. coli for optimized production of more cost-effective and safer biotherapuetics.
“Primorigen Biosciences intends to solidify product development and marketing, OEM product sourcing, and investment relationships that are just underway,” said Chuck Oehler, head of the Madison company developing research products for cell therapy. “Thrive’s grant will make that happen.”
Thrive has targeted biotechnology as a key sector for action. More than 165 companies in the region comprise the R&D, drug development, and medical device segment of biotechnology. Thrive’s recently published regional Biotech Snapshot depicts a high impact sector characterized by both small growth businesses and industry leaders such as Promega and Covance; average wages in the mid- to upper- $60,000 range; and a value-add per biotech worker of $114,000 compared to $65,000 for all other industries in Wisconsin.