Posts Tagged life science

Life Sciences Industry Outlook for 2018: Post BiotechShowcase & JPM

Image result for Biotech Showcase 2018, JPM18JPM 2018 and concurrent events just ended with what may be one of its biggest draws.  As many as 10,000 people from life science industry and its related sectors are likely to have descended upon the city, during last four days.  In addition to JPM event itself, everything health was under review and up for discussion at various conferences including at EBD Group & Demy Colten’s #BiotechShowcase #DigitalMedicine #BTS18 and #WuXiGlobalForum2018 . Networking and deal making continued late in the nights at various receptions held across the city. Receptions by legal firms like #WilsonSonsini #MoFoLLP #ReedSmithLLP attracted some of the biggest crowds.

IMG_20180110_170128791.jpgOverall the tone for 2018, seemed highly optimistic.  BiotechShowcase held a media roundup and echoes of optimism were heard from almost all panelists @barbara_ryan12 @TriangleInsight @CarolineYLChen @adamfeuerstein @statnews @SFBIZronleuty @BrittanyMeiling @endpts @juliet_preston @medcitynews @ldtimmerman .

Image result for biotech innovationThere is a general agreement that the pace of #innovation in biotech greatly accelerated in 2017 and is likely to continue. According to Luke Timmeerman, “sheer velocity of news in healthtech innovation is fascinating”. Transformative therapies across huge and diverse range of diseases are increasingly focusing on cures and going beyond the short term treatment focus. The surge of innovation has been led by focus on oncology although concern was also raised in one of the panels that we still continue to get stymied and realize how friggin smart the disease of cancer is and if we will truly crack the code on cancer in the immediate upcoming years. All signs are however, that next year we may see critical data from some clinical trials in immuno-oncology space that can cause market spikes.

Here are some areas of concern raised in some of the panels. In 2017, a slight dip was observed in the areas of orphan and rare diseases. Also there seemed to be a general consensus that we need smart policies that incentivize new anti microbial drugs and other treatments for infectious diseases. Due to increasing resistance of antibiotics, there is an ongoing and real fear for some of the infectious diseases to turn into pandemics. These are areas that bold entrepreneurs may focus on. Also medical devices continues to remain somewhat underfunded. Discussions around accelerating healthcare costs and drug pricing issues creeped over into many panels. Entrepreneurs with disruptive pricing innovation in product development as well as healthcare can easily have a tremendous leverage. It can’t be overstressed that finding effective pricing solutions holds key to continued and sustainable growth in healthcare sector.

Discussion in one of the panels focused for a few minutes around large investments in life sciences and if that indicated a healthtech bubble that may be due for a crash.  Indeed, some experts observed that pace of 2017 is unlikely to continue and there may well be a slight dip in 2018. But overall the consensus seemed to be, that a steep and deep pipeline of innovation in R&D is likely to prevent a crash, and the venture funding blizzard is likely to continue. Overall, the feeling among investors and healthcare experts was that among the industry, there is a strong focus on science and people are pursuing innovation with discipline that will ensure unprecedented mechanisms and novel medicines. All this activity is taking healthcare to a new level of cures and sustainability and stability from temporary treatment focus. Exciting indeed to be living in this era of amazing healthcare innovation.



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Life Science and Investment Partnership Opportunities with China – 2015 OneMed Forum & OneMed China Forum

Opportunities and challenges for life science companies, in working with China, was a big focus of OneMed Forum, 2015.  OneMed Forum 2015, took place at the same time JP Morgan event was happening in San Francisco.

USS San Francisco (CA-38) entering San Francis...

USS San Francisco (CA-38) entering San Francisco Bay under the Golden Gate Bridge, December 1942. The structure on the lower left is Fort Point. This picture was taken December 11, 1942, as the USS San Francisco, severely damaged in the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal the previous month, returns to her namesake city. The ship was en route to the Mare Island Navy Yard for repairs. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The OneMed Forum conference with a mission to bring healthcare companies and investors together, opened on January 12, 2015 with a panel that discussed Opportunities in China.  China has seen a very rapid economic growth that has spurred tremendous interest in investing in promising products and technologies, particularly in the healthcare arena.  This panel explored strategies to access the Chinese market.  There was a lot of stress on getting local partners early on.  The panel also discussed deal structure alternatives for companies looking to secure capital, as well as licensing and distribution opportunities in China.  (PS – please see link  for Life Science job opportunities in China)

After OneMed Conference ended on January, 13th, OneMedChina conference occurred at the same venue.  After the opening remarks by Tony Chu, Founder and Partner with The Pharma Partners, a panel discussed a topic of great general interest “Investing in America”.  It is no more that American companies are chasing Chinese investors, but also many Chinese investors are actively seeking investment opportunities in North America and Europe, particularly in the healthcare arena.  There is a great deal of interest among Chinese investors in technologies that would address Chinese and global markets.  The panel of experts included, Mr. Kevin Chen, Partner and Head of Healthcare Investment, Sequoia Capital China, Mr. Xiangyu Ouyang, Partner & Head of Healthcare Investment, Legend Capital, Dr. David Wang, Partner, OrbiMed China and Mr. Edward Zhou, Partner and Head of Healthcare Investment, New Horizon Capital.  The panel shared insights on investment strategy to follow and shared their current global investment focus.

Next panel on “How to build a successful partnership with a Chinese company” was represented by Dr. Sanuj Ravindran, Global Head of Business Ventures, The Medicine Company and Mr. Andrew Wong, VP of Business Development at SciClone Corporation.  Both panelists stressed the need for local partners.  Wong said that hiring a local advisor will help bridge the culture gap.  Ravindran stressed the need to get on the ground and spend some time to get business and cultural understanding for such partnership to get off to a good start.

These panels were followed by lunch with extended networking time.  Rooms for one on one discussions between investors and companies were also available.

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Wish List in Open Letter to TiEcon 2012 ( Planning Committee

Dear TiEcon Organizers:


You have kicked off the planning for TiEcon 2012, with continuing goal to deliver the best TiEcon ever.  Successfully year after year, you have delivered a conference that is vibrant with opportunities for professionals, looking to advance their careers, staying connected with their peers, looking at staying in touch with the emerging trends, and looking for access to angels and VC community.  Year after year, you have exceeded the goal to deliver the best TiEcon, by adding new and exciting offerings, like TiE50, TiE Expo and more, by attracting the best and most sought after speakers and panels, and by keeping the enormous volunteer pool engaged, with exciting volunteering opportunities.  It is perhaps the only conference where hundreds of volunteers often spend hours toiling in the trenches, and then claim to get more out of this conference than at any other conference.


So what is going to be the focus this year?  Well, we have our wish list.  Readers, please leave comments about what you wish to see at this year’s TiEcon.  We hope to see more discussion on social media and where will be next disruption in social media.  Television has always been inherently social activity.  People gathered around the tube when TV was just introduced and friends still gather around the tube to enjoy sports events like Super Bowl, Academy Awards, and movies.  Will there be re-socializing television by integrating it with social media.  Is Pinterest the next big thing in social media?  Even in it’s “by invitation-only” beta phase, the company has attracted 7 million plus visitors and is driving more traffic to company websites and blogs than YouTube, Google+, and LinkedIn combined.  With growing cybercrime with huge and costly implications for corporations, how will we enhance network security?  Besides managing new and emerging systems, how will companies protect data and information?


Will TiEon focus on Energy and Life Science industries?  Despite the major Soyndra fiasco, we would like to see some discussions on solving energy challenges? Apparently, there are huge potential advantages to making cheap fuel from seaweed or macro-algae and Bio Architecture Lab inBerkeleyis currently building huge seaweed farms.  It remains to be seen how it will scale.  Will there be discussions on electric cars with durable and long lasting battery, even on harnessing solar power more effectively, and other potential breakthroughs to deal with the energy challenges.  I will absolutely love to see some serious focus on Life Science industry.  Some of the current major buzz words are the new frontiers of synthetic biology, wireless devices, and the continuing interest though not much progress in personalized medicine (with the exception of Herceptin and recent launch of Zelboraf).  Scientists will be heavily focusing on understanding the brain, and perhaps mapping the brain by zooming in on single neurons (brain has billions of them).  Understanding breakdowns within the neurons will enable targeted gene therapies, besides the current focus of personalized medicine, in oncology.


And finally, what new and innovative ways will the TiEcon enable entrepreneurs and other dedicated professionals to come together and leverage what each has to offer, to mutual advantage?  Each year, TiEcon has responded to the external opportunities and challenges with new offerings like extended and serious focus on Women’s Forum to encourage and ensure women professionals’ participation at TiEcon 2011, Outer Realm sessions at 2010 TiEcon, to challenge perceptual boundaries in technological, marketing, and cognitive realm and allow for cross-functional collaboration, Business Bootcamp sessions in 2009 to provide hands-on tips to the entrepreneurs, during the fledgling economy, and so on.  Now in 2012, the economy is on the path to gradual recovery but uncertainty and funding challenges linger.  We have high expectations that TiEcon 2012 will give yet again a positive boost to the professionals to follow their dreams, and offer sessions and strategies with tools and techniques, to enable them to achieve their dreams.  Readers, please leave comments about your wish list.


And friends, I have also heard some great info regarding best price offer for TiEcon 2012 that will be offered and will be valid only on February 21 and 22.  Stay tuned to my tweets and postings and I will share any news I get soon and don’t forget to register at

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