CEO Update | 27 June 2022
Key investment shows competitiveness of the UK ecosystem
I was delighted to see the announcement from Moderna that it has chosen the UK to base its mRNA Innovation and Technology Centre and an additional mRNA manufacturing centre. Alongside other recent investments from the likes of Fujifilm and ThermoFisher, the UK is now superbly placed to ensure the next generation of therapeutics and vaccines are developed and manufactured for the globe right here within our world-class ecosystem. It is another proof point of what I’ve been saying at international conferences this year - the UK has unique assets and capabilities that make it the most efficient place to spend your biotech bucks.
On which note, invoX Pharma, a subsidiary of Hong Kong’s Sino Biopharm, has pledged major investment in Cambridge operations following its $161 million cash acquisition of long-standing BIA member F-star Therapeutics. It is great to see global companies like Sino Biopharm seeing the value of putting UK biotech at the heart of their R&D platform. Without a doubt, we will be seeing more M&A deals of promising UK companies in the coming months.
Looking to Westminster
As last week’s by-election results reverberate around the corridors of Whitehall and Westminster, we are focused on the key issues that matter most to our members. Today I am meeting with the Pensions Minister, Guy Opperman MP, and the Chancellor’s Parliamentary Private Secretary, Craig Williams MP, to talk about what more can be done to increase investment from the City of London into innovative UK businesses.
On Thursday, CEOs from our member companies will be joining the BIA team for our 22nd annual Parliament Day. This is our flagship influencing day when our members get the opportunity to speak directly to ministers, MPs and civil servants to tell them what the Government can do to support our industry. We will be delivering key messages on increasing public and private investment into start-ups and scale-ups, improving patients’ access to innovative medicines, and supporting emerging technologies, like genomics and engineering biology. Places are full but keep a lookout on our social media channels for photos of the day’s proceedings.
MHRA announcement on medical devices
In regulatory developments the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has published the government’s response to the Future Regulation of Medical Devices in the United Kingdom Consultation. The agency is committed to engagement with industry and stakeholders whilst refining legislation and implementing changes. The MHRA will gradually phase in the new requirements with transitional arrangements to give the industry enough time to adapt to the change.
Thank you to everyone who attended our two fantastic conferences last week
It was great to see so many senior CEOs from our sector sharing their experiences with the next generation of talent at our Life Sciences Leadership Summit in sunny Hertfordshire on Monday and Tuesday. As always, the programme was a mix of informative workshops, provocative panels and late-night networking.
As the Medicines Manufacturing Industry Partnership (MMIP) annual conference moved online due to the rail strikes on Tuesday fleet of foot organisation ensured we continued to have a range of interesting panels and presentations, and a positive keynote speech from Science Minister George Freeman MP. We look forward to this community coming together at the bioProcess UK conference later in the year.
Steve Bates OBE
CEO, BioIndustry Association