BIA Networking Lunch - Stevenage


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The BIA will be running another popular networking lunch, hosted by Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst. This is a great opportunity to hear from local members, meet new business contacts and grab a bite to eat. We are excited to be showcasing members the Stevenage region

We are pleased to announce that the Office for Life Sciences (OLS) will also be joining us for a special Brexit-focused session. 


12.00:  Lunch and networking

13.00:  Steve Bates, CEO, BIA 

13.10:  Sally Ann Forsyth, CEO, Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst 

13.20:  Company presentations
Representatives from Freeline Therapeutics, LifeArc, and LifT Biosciences will join us to give short presentations on their work and recent developments.

14.00:  Networking  - tea, coffee, and biscuits provided

14.25:  OLS Brexit preparedness workshop
The Office for Life Sciences (OLS) will be holding a workshop to help inform and update member companies prepare for EU Exit.

OLS will deliver presentations on the following areas: Introduction to the Office for Life Sciences; Regulations update; Continuity of Supply; Trader readiness; Workforce; and Q&A.

15:15  Close



Steve Bates

Chief Executive Officer


Since his appointment as Chief Executive of the BioIndustry Association in 2012, Steve has led major BIA campaigns for, amongst other things, improved access to finance, the refilling of the Biomedical Catalyst, anti-microbial resistance and the opportunity the sector presents to generalist long term investors. Steve champions the adaptive pathway approach to the licensing of new drugs, the need for Early Access and is particularly proud of the working relationship the BIA has established with the UK’s leading medical research charities.

A founder member of United Life Sciences, a strategic partnership representing over 1000 life science and healthcare member companies across the UK and internationally, Steve attends the UK’s Ministerial Industry Strategy Group, and sits on The Royal Society's Science, Industry and Translation Committee.

Beyond the UK Steve is a member of EuropaBio’s Board and its National Association Council and is a founder member of the International Confederation of Biotech Associations. An expert and regular commentator on the sector in the media and at industry-leading conferences Steve has worked both in biotech (as Senior Director at Genzyme UK and Ireland) and at the highest levels of UK government (as Special Advisor to John Reid, MP, during his time in Tony Blair’s government) for over 15 years. Steve was awarded the OBE in January 2017.

Dr Sally Ann Forsyth

Chief Executive Officer

Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst

Sally Ann was appointed as Chief Executive Office of Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst in March 2018 to lead it through its next phase of expansion.

Prior to taking up her role as CEO at Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst, Dr Forsyth was Director of Harwell Oxford (Science and Technology Facilities Council), Colworth Science Park (Unilever) and CEO for Norwich Research Park (BBSRC, NNUH and UEA), leading their transformation from national research centres in to internationally recognised science parks.

Sally Ann began her career as a management trainee with Unilever holding a range of senior roles across technology licensing, open innovation, strategic alliance management and venture capital investment before joining Goodman International property group as Director of Science Parks.

She has a PhD in Molecular Biology from the University of Cambridge and is a qualified Chartered Global Management Accountant.

Jane Whitrow

Vice President, Business Operations

Freeline Therapeutics

Jane is a Chartered Accountant who brings specialist experience of working with small and medium-sized technology businesses.

She joined Freeline after seven years at IXICO, where she was responsible for fundraising, forecasting, financial reporting, investor relations, HR, IT, legal, facilities, Quality and Company Secretarial. Here she was part of the management team that acquired Phytopharm, and the subsequent listing on the AIM market. Before that, she worked for a variety of high-tech and start-up companies, including Cambridge Biostability, Novacta Biosystems and BioSyntha.

Jane also spent five years at the biotech venture capitalist Merlin Ventures (latterly Merlin BioSciences), becoming Finance Director. She trained as an accountant with KPMG focusing on small and medium-sized technology businesses. Jane has a BSc from the University of Manchester and a PhD in Plant Genetics from the University of Birmingham

Justin Bryans

Executive Director, Drug Discovery


Justin trained at the Universities of York and Oxford and has worked as a medicinal chemist for over 25 years in Biotech and Pharma, including Parke-Davis and Pfizer, delivering a number of clinical candidates. He joined LifeArc in 2005 where he currently leads the drug discovery team collaborating with academics on cutting edge science to deliver proof of concept and develop potential drugs for diseases of high unmet need. Justin teaches on drug discovery at QMUL, UCL and the Wellcome Trust. He also sits on the Drug Discovery Committee for Cancer Research UK and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Harry Kwong

QC & Process Development Engineer

LIfT BioSciences

Harry joined LIfT BioSciences in 2019 where he is responsible for the manufacturing strategies that support the early stage development and production of the company’s product, N-LIfT. His areas of focus include process development and optimisation as well as scale up and tech transfer with a vision of delivering N-LIfT to the market. Harry received a BSc in Biochemistry from Imperial College London and completed a master’s in Biochemical Engineering at UCL.

LIfT Biosciences is a Biotech bringing to market a 1st in class allogeneic innate cell therapy called Neutrophil Only Leukocyte Infusion Therapy (N-LIfT). N-LIfT has the game-changing potential to destroy all solid tumours irrespective of mutation or strain. N-LIfT uses a special type of N1a neutrophil with superior cancer killing and immune recruitment capabilities. Our vision is to develop the world’s first cell bank of mass produced ‘cancer killing neutrophils’ to deliver a portfolio of immuno-oncology cell therapies for delivering complete remission in all solid tumours, with an initial focus on high unmet need orphan tumours such as those found in the lung, liver and pancreas.

Anusha Panjwani

Senior Policy and Engagement Manager

Office for Life Sciences

David Griffiths-Johnson

Head of Investment and Engagement

Office for Life Sciences

Alex Mulchrone

Senior Policy Advisor

Office for Life Sciences



Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst
Gunnels Wood Rd


Free for members and non-members

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