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National Associations Council Summit 2022 | Biotechnology: Delivering Europe’s Industrial Strategy Across Sectors

3 March 2022 @ 10:00 am 1:30 pm CET

EuropaBio’s National Associations Council (NAC) is a platform that brings together all EuropaBio’s National Associations and helps to ensure coordination of EuropaBio actions throughout Europe.

The NAC represents biotechnology priorities across Europe’s Member and partner countries, working together to build long term economic and societal benefit from biotechnology across sectors.

The 2022 EuropaBio National Associations Council (NAC) Summit (France) focuses on how biotech is delivering the industrial strategy through national development.

National Associations, biotech companies, policy makers and others will discuss the commercial pathways for healthcare biotechnology to deliver innovative therapeutics to patients, and for industrial biotechnology to drive economic growth and market development.

NAC Summit outcomes will be key policy and initiative recommendations at national and EU level for the successful societal and economic performance of biotechnology across sectors.

Who should take part? If you support development of the biotech community at national or European level, or are a biotech company of any size, get involved and help debate the key drivers for successful economic delivery.


10:00 – Opening session: French presidency priorities for biotechnology

Welcome: Tineke Van hooland, Chair EuropaBio National Associations Council
· Healthcare presidency priorities
· Industrial biotech and bioeconomy priorities

10:20 – Healthcare biotechnology: Innovative therapeutics to patients in Europe

Organisations: European Parliament, Sanofi, Tree Frog Therapeutics, HBio, AseBio, Bio.be, EuropaBio, PTC Therapeutics

Topic 1: Building from Europe’s innovation; transforming research to a sustainable and accessible healthcare
Chair: Ana Sofia Antunes, mabdesign
Company statements: Sanofi, Tree Frog Therapeutics
How do national and EU initiatis and policies help move research advances through to patient uptake? What needs to happen in order to bring momentum and investment into technologies, skills and infrastructure for next generation therapies in Europe?

Topic 2: Innovation and healthcare across borders; Delivering Europe’s strength to all
Chair: Chloé Evans, France Biotech
Company statement: Sanofi, PTC Therapeutics
How does Europe enable cross-border healthcare? The panes discusses the policy, regulatory frameworks and national collaborations that can bring ultimate benefit for European citizens.

11:30 – Break

11:45 – Industrial biotechnology and bioeconomy: Growth and innovation to market

Organisations: Circular Bio-based Europe Joint Undertaking, AFYREN, ITERG & PIVERT & IMPROVE, France 2030, BASF, HollandBio, Remilk, Bio-Base Europe Pilot Plant

Topic 3: Acceleration of business and manufacturing; investment and policy
Chair: Christophe Luguel, IAR
Company statements: AFYREN, BASF
How does Europe ride the wave of manufacturing from biological platforms? The panel discusses national initiatives and EU policies and programmes that enable long term investment into large scale manufacture and ensuring a competitive next generation industrial landscape.

Topic 4: Novel foods; A pathway to market in Europe
Chair: Agnes Borg, EuropaBio
Company statements: BASF, Remilk
Novel foods are a core part of Europe’s future sustainability and competitiveness, offering an opportunity to capitalise on world leading research. The panel will discuss the critical policy and regulatory framework that will enable investment in early stage innovators and for large scale production for European and global market performance.

13:00 – Closing plenary: Looking ahead for European industrial delivery from biotechnology
Chair: Claire Skentelbery, EuropaBio
Chairs and companies from across the sessions discuss key messages from the meeting and make recommendations for policies and initiatives at national and European levels to deliver economic contribution from biotechnology.

13:30 – Close


Tomislav Sokol, Member of the European Parliament, EPP, Croatia
Tomislav Sokol was born in Zagreb in 1982. He obtained his first degree in law at the Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb, in 2006, magna cum laude. He then obtained a Masters of Law (LL.M.) specialising in European Union Law at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KUL), Belgium, in 2009, magna cum laude. He defended his PhD at KUL, dealing with free movement of cross-border health care services in the EU and its impact on national health insurance systems in 2014.
He was an Assistant Minister in the Ministry of Science and Education in 2017, after which he became a Member of the Croatian Parliament. He was a Member of the Croatian Parliament until July 2019, when he became a Member of the European Parliament. He is a Member of the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) and a Substitute Member of the Committee on Regional Development (REGI).
So far, he has published around 20 papers and 1 book on issues concerning EU law, including several articles in European journals, such as the European Law Review and the European Law Journal. He has presented papers at many international conferences and worked on different research projects. Previously, he worked in a legal practice and is currently a Senior Lecturer at the Zagreb School of Economics and Management where he has taught Introduction to European Union and Principles of Law courses since the academic year 2010/2011. He is also an assistant professor at the Catholic University of Croatia where he has taught since the academic year 2016/2017. His areas of professional interest include the law of the European common market, EU health law, competition law, International and European social law and International and European trade law.

Ana Sofia Antunes, Head of International Relations & Scientific Events, MabDesign
Ana Antunes obtained her PhD in Microbiology from the Lisbon University. She has an international career having worked both in research institutions like Institut Pasteur à Paris, or Instituto de Tecnologia Quimica e Biologica (ITQB, Portugal) as well as pharmaceutical companies as Novartis Vaccines & Diagnostics (Siena, Italy). Through her career, she has been involved in the organization of scientific events such as workshops and dedicated conferences. Ana is Head of International Relations & Scientific Events at MabDesign.

Elke Duwenig, Senior Biotechnology Expert Regulatory / Public & Government Affairs, Nutrition & Health, BASF
Dr. Elke Duwenig is an inspiring senior expert, skilled in biotechnology and innovation on agricultural and life science challenges, with passion for sustainable solutions. She is currently active in Regulatory and Government Affairs for Industrial Biotechnology at Nutrition & Health, BASF SE. She was also an expert lead in the Corporate Renewable Raw Material Roadmap at BASF. Elke gives expert guidance for strategies and roadmaps as well as for R&D projects and sales products. She is strongly engaged in legislation and authority work to safeguard biotech products and opening markets together with EuropaBio, EU SFI, FEFANA, AMFEP, and other trade associations and think tanks like BIC, ILSI and AFSI, both in the EU and globally.
Elke studied biology and chemistry at the University of Münster, Germany and Stanford University, USA. She graduated and completed her doctorate in molecular plant physiology at the Institute for Gene-Biological Research (Institut für genbiologische Forschung) IGF, Berlin, and did two postdocs at the Max-Planck Institute in Golm and the University of Freiburg, Germany, before joining BASF.

Denis Chéreau, Chief Executive Officer, ITERG & PIVERT & IMPROVE
Denis Chéreau holds a Ph.D. in microbiology (production of single-cell protein by solid state fermentation).
After 15 years in the production and marketing of enzymes, he moved for 14 years in the starch industry as technical and plant manager in France and the USA.
He is currently general manager of 3 R&D centres : IMPROVE expert in plant based protein, PIVERT expert in green chemistry and biotechnologies and ITERG French institute of oil seeds and plant based fat processing.

Nicolas Sordet, Co-founder & Chief Executive Officer, AFYREN
Nicolas Sordet is co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of AFYREN since 2014. He holds a Master’s degree in Corporate Finance and Financial Markets from the Grenoble Management School.
He put his financial knowledge into practice by holding several positions in Investment banks and Financial Institutions in Switzerland, in the US and in Asia.
He was Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Link Securities from 2006 to 2013, then Private Equity/Venture Capital and Financing Advisor from 2013 to 2014. He has been able to apply his financial expertise and experience for AFYREN development.

Virginia Puzzolo, Head of Programme, Circular Bio-based Europe Joint Undertaking
Virginia holds a doctoral degree in plant ecology and biology. For the last 20 years, she has been developing and implementing the EU research and innovation policies in several EU institutions. Virginia’s previous professional experience includes the European Commission’s Research Executive Agency, the Enterprise Directorate-General of the European Commission, the EU’s Joint Research Centre, and the Italian Research Forest Management Institute.

Ion Arocena Vélez, Director General, AseBio
Ion Arocena joined AseBio, the Spanish Bioindustry Association, in 2016 as general manager. He is a biotechnologist by training and completed his studies with an executive MBA at EOI Business School, Madrid.
He started off at the Technology Transfer Office of the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, offering Technology Watch services to SMEs. His next position was at Genoma España, a Government Owned Agency promoting the protection of Intellectual Property and the transfer of such results to companies.
From 2006 to 2015, he was part of the funding team of Suanfarma Biotech SGECR, a venture capital firm, specialized in life science, where he was responsible for the evaluation of investment opportunities.

Mathieu Brandibat, National coordinator of the “Recyclability” and “Biosourced” acceleration strategies, France 2030
Mathieu Brandibat is an agronomist. Specialized in the management of information systems, he worked within fields such as the valorization of innovation and the utilities. Following a duty at the ADEME (French Agency dedicated to the ecological transition), he is now part of the Prime Minister services (General Secretariat for Investment – SGPI) involved in the national plan “France 2030” dedicated to pave an ambitious way for R&D, innovation and industrialization, as the national coordinator for strategies « recycling and reincorporation of materials » and « Biobased products and industrial biotechnologies – sustainable fuels”.

Wieteke Wouters, Programme Director, HollandBIO
Wieteke Wouters is program director of HollandBIO, the Dutch biotech industry association. HollandBIO’s mission is that biotech is able to contribute maximally to a sustainable and healthy society. With the motto “challenge the status quo”, HollandBIO takes on the obstacles that stand in the way of the sector’s innovative frontrunners.
Prior to joining HollandBIO, Wieteke worked at a consultancy firm specialized in health and sustainability. Wieteke began her career at a Leiden based biotech start-up. Wieteke graduated in Biomedical Sciences at Utrecht University and specialized in Science and Business Management.

Kevin Alessandri, PhD, Co-founder and CTO, TreeFrog Therapeutics
Initially trained in biophysics at the Ecole Normale Supérieure, Kévin Alessandri completed in 2013 a PhD thesis on cell encapsulation technologies at the Institut Curie, France. He then continued his rexearch at the University of Geneva, Switzerland, where he met Maxime Feyeux, an expert in pluripotent stem cell biology. Together, they invented a biomimetic cell culture technology – C-Stem – allowing for the mass-production of cell therapies. Alessandri and Feyeux co-founded TreeFrog Therapeutics in 2018, with the aim of providing access to safer, more efficient and more affordable cell therapies to millions of patients. Following a recent $75M Series B financing, Kevin Alessandri will move to Boston, USA, in September 2022 to lead the newly created U.S. subsidiary of TreeFrog Therapeutics.

Chloe Evans, Market Research Manager & International Relations, France Biotech
Chloé Evans is currently Head of Market Research and International Relations at France Biotech. Since 2016, she has been coordinating market research and industry publications for the association, conducting policy impact assessments and business intelligence. She also helps support and coordinate some of France Biotech’s working groups and the Association’s actions on new policies and advocacy for healthcare and biotechnology industries. Since 2019, she oversees international relations with both European and global associations and stakeholders. Prior to joining France Biotech, Chloé worked in strategy consulting for the healthcare sector at Bionest Partners and then with D&Consultants where she worked on various strategy and marketing projects for technology transfer offices, pharma and biotech companies.
Ms. Evans holds a degree in Biochemistry (BSc) from the University of Manchester (UK) and a Master’s degree in European Business and Management from ESCP Europe Business school (London/Paris).

Frédéric Druck, Managing Director, essenscia wallonia /brussels – Secretary General, bio.be/essenscia
Since September 2016, Frédéric Druck (55) is the Secretary General of bio.be/essenscia, the association of companies active in Belgian life sciences and biotechnologies industry. Frédéric is also Managing Director of essenscia wallonia and of essenscia brussels, the regional associations of the Belgian federation for chemistry and life sciences industry “essenscia”. Finally, he is chairing the Board of aptaskil, the training center for chemistry and life sciences in Wallonia as well as the Board of the EU Biotech Campus, a multi training operators platform that is part of the Belgian Recovery Plan.
Frédéric joined essenscia after spending almost 10 years at BioWin, the health cluster of Wallonia (Belgium) where he mainly developed international partnerships with biotech clusters from the US, China and Europe. During this period, he used to Chair the Council of European Bio Regions (CEBR) and the European Diagnostic Clusters Alliances (EDCA).
Frédéric did his whole career in Public Relations and Public Affairs positions in the biopharma industry as well as in sector-related associations.

Liam Sharon, Head of food technology, Remilk
MSc food molecular biology from the Hebrew university Jerusalem, Israel. BSc Food science, technology and Management from Heriot Watt University Edinburgh, Scotland. More than 15 years’ experience in the food industry with emphasis on dairy and product development. Joined Remilk as a Head of food R&D one year ago

Hendrik Waegeman, Head of Business Operations, Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant
Hendrik Waegeman obtained a master degree in biochemical engineering at Ghent University (2007) and holds a PhD in Applied Biological Sciences-Chemical Engineering (2011), also obtained at Ghent University. During his doctoral research he metabolically engineered Esherichia coli to improve recombinant protein production. During his post-doctoral research, Hendrik Waegeman was involved in a number of projects that focused on the fermentative production of specialty carbohydrates. He is also a co-founder of the company Inbiose NV, founded in 2013, which develops fermentatively produced specialty carbohydrates such as human milk oligoscaccharides. In 2012 he was guest lecturer at the University of Incheon, South-Korea where he lectured a course on Metabolic Engineering and Modelling of Micro-organisms. Since 2012, he has a position at Bio Base Europe Pilot Plant, a multi-purpose pilot facility in the Port of Ghent in Belgium where he has worked as Head of Business Development and is now Head of Business Operations.
Hendrik is also board director of Inbisoe NV, Bio.be (the cluster of Belgian biotech companies) and Biobased Industries Consortium (BIC, the private partner in the joint undertaking Horizon2020-BBI and the upcoming joint undertaking CBE (Circular Bio-based Europe).

Stamatiki Kritas, Research & Development, Innovation Management, HBio Cluster

Christophe Luguel, Head of International Affairs, Cluster Industries & Agro-ressources (IAR)

Agnes Borg, Industrial Biotechnology Director, EuropaBio

Should you encounter any issues with the reception of the confirmation email, please contact Martina CILIA (m.cilia@europabio.org).


+32 2 735 03 13

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