Sustainable Biotech SMEs – Drivers for European Innovation
Brussels, 26 January 2011
This month EuropaBio launches a new publication focussing on Biotech SMEs and what is needed to allow them to champion smart, sustainable and inclusive economic growth in Europe.
Biotech SMEs are active in all sectors from healthcare to industrial and agricultural applications, often working with larger companies to develop solutions for longer, healthier and greener lives. In the healthcare sector, for example, larger biopharmaceutical companies are increasingly relying on external R&D, mostly performed by emerging SMEs which now represent as much as 30% to 50% of the pipeline for many major companies.
Andrea Rappagliosi, Chair of EuropaBio, said: “These enterprises have the high-end skills to deliver the innovative products and services and the smart, sustainable and inclusive growth that the EU is seeking. But if we want them to fulfil their potential there are some significant barriers that we need to break through. This new publication consolidates the aims and achievements of EuropaBio’s SME Platform, highlights the obstacles still in the path of biotech SMEs and makes 6 clear recommendations on how to tackle them.”
EuropaBio, which represents the interests of some 1800 SMEs, established its SME Platform in 2009. It brings together enterprises with national biotech industry associations, venture capitalists, financing bodies and other stakeholders.
EuropaBio Secretary General, Nathalie Moll, added: “The Platform unites us in a vision for the future where Europe’s world class entrepreneurial scientists and researchers are enabled to spend more time in their labs creating solutions and innovating responsibly, rather than struggling with overwhelming administrative burdens and red tape.”
Tom Saylor, Chair of EuropaBio’s SME Platform and CEO of SME Arecor, concluded: “Although economic prospects have improved recently, times are still turbulent for Europe’s Biotech SMEs. Many biotech SMEs remain strapped for funding and very few are able to realize sustainable growth appropriate to the strength of our science base in Europe. In 2011 our SME Platform will continue to work towards improving access to the Risk Sharing Financing Facility, European Investment Bank loans, and other sources of finance for growth for biotech SMEs, in line with the activities of the Hungarian Presidency. In addition, we will aim to improve the sharing of best practice across the member states to support the development and sustainability of Biotech SMEs. Finally, I am delighted to announce that we will be calling for a new round of applications for EuropaBio’s Most Innovative Biotech SME Award in the spring of this year following the success of Addex Pharmaceuticals in last year’s competition.”
- To download a copy of EuropaBio’s brochure on Sustainable Biotech SMEs please click here:
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EuropaBio is the European Association for Bioindustries, bringing together bioscience companies from all fields of research and development, testing, manufacturing and distribution of biotechnology products. It has 66 corporate and 7 associated members, 4 BioRegions and 22 National Biotechnology Associations representing some 1800 small and medium sized enterprises. www.europabio.org