#BIO2017: What’s Happening in the World of IP?

Who’s ready to hit the beach?

Wait, did I say beach? I meant the San Diego Convention Center.

….But the beach will be waiting for you once you wrap up two and a half days of IP educational programming!

Let’s take a look at what will be on the agenda for BIO’s Intellectual Property Track next week at our International Convention (not registered yet? We can solve that, just go here!)

Monday, June 19, 2017

Of Rats and Men: The Success Story of Human Therapeutic Antibodies Produced in the Omnirat
Time: 4:00 PM–5:00 PM    Date: Jun 19, 2017
Location: Room 7B, Upper Level

 

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

 

 

 

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

 

**Continuing Legal Education

Some of our Intellectual Property sessions at BIO will offer attorneys an opportunity to obtain Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credits in select states. Application for CLE credit will be submitted in California and Virginia, and attorneys will be notified if BIO receives credit approval. Attorneys needing CLE credit from other states are welcome to sign in, pick up the CLE forms and apply to their jurisdictions on their own. BIO will provide you with documentation when applying for CLE credit.

#BIO2017: A Peek at Partnering | SPARK

Breaking Buzz is BIO’s newest blog series that reaches across the globe to bring you an insider’s preview into the hottest international and partnering trends coming to San Diego for the BIO International Convention.

Perfecting Translation

Stanford’s translational research program, SPARK, is only 11 years old yet already has funded and supported 148 past and current projects, helped launch 24 start-ups and has had over 30 patents licensed. Spark lays claim to a 62% success rate; measured when a project enters into human clinical trials, or is licensed to a start-up or existing company.

With those kind of stats it’s no wonder Mahima Agochiya, Business Development and Program Manager for SPARK was besieged with meeting requests at last year’s BIO International Convention within BIO’s One-on-One Partnering™ system.

SPARK’s remarkable program – a partnership between Stanford and volunteers from the biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and healthcare investment industries – offers support to an average of 12-15 new projects each year.

Mahima Agochiya PhD, MBA
Business Development and Program Manager
SPARK Translational Research Program at Stanford University School of Medicine

Breaking Buzz sat down with Mahima to chat about the 69 meetings she and her colleagues attended in three days during the BIO International Convention in San Francisco, and asked about her strategy for partnering success.

We know SPARK is a Translational Medicine Program based out of Stanford School of Medicine that seeks partnerships with industry to help translate its projects, and is entering into its second year attending BIO. What kind of partner are you looking for this year?

SPARK is agnostic to indication so we are not limited to specific areas of therapeutics. We generally look for companies that are interested in early stage start-up funding or licensing; or both. The assets/ projects that we are looking to partner with this year are novel, address an unmet clinical need, and are at a stage where they ready for the next step.

There are thousands of companies in the BIO’s One-on-One ™ system representing tens of thousands of assets. How did you narrow it down to 69 meetings?

The first thing I do is add filters. We are mostly interested in companies that license at early-stage since our projects are preclinical at the most, so my go-to filters are “licensing” and “early-stage” for example. I then send out a lot of meeting requests. Perhaps it was because last year was only the first year that SPARK attended BIO, and my first year too, but I was very surprised by the number of invitations we got from other companies. It helps a lot to belong to a university that has a great reputation scientifically and I think people were curious about us, given our success rate.

Can you tell us about that success rate?

SPARK has a 62% success rate on all projects we take in. So far we’ve spun out 24 start-ups; eight licenses to biopharma; four tech transfers without license, and 31 clinical trials – 10 without license. To date we have provided education, mentorship and funding to 148 projects and hundreds of students.

Last year SPARK had 35 projects (assets) that you presented during partnering meetings at the Convention. Did any of those materialize into a licensing opportunity?

Yes! Last year resulted in at least one successful partnership that I will be able to talk about at the Convention this June, and we have ongoing negotiations with other companies we met, most of whom we’ll meet with again in San Diego. BIO provides a great opportunity to get to know new companies and share experiences with them. I think it might be hard to walk away with nothing.

What’s your advice to people new to the Partnering system?

Don’t have a script ready. Instead, open with a clear and concise statement saying exactly what you’re looking for. A half-hour isn’t long enough to delve into details, but rather to quickly ascertain if there is a viable partnering opportunity; so keep the conversation direct at opening, then very flexible. Also, provide all of your materials on a USB. SPARK’s assets are detailed, each on a single page, in one file given on a single USB drive.

Besides partnering meetings, what else is on your Convention calendar?

On Monday from 11:30 – 4:30, SPARK will team up with partners from Massachusetts, Quebec, Philadelphia, San Francisco Bay Area, Oslo, UK Golden Triangle, Catalonia, and the Paris Region to present cutting edge innovations in oncology at the 6th International Cancer Cluster Showcase. Each cluster will present their oncology pipelines in compact 20-minute presentations, so it’s the perfect opportunity to learn about the latest innovations and a great precursor for partnering meetings on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

Why did you get an MBA eight years after getting a PhD in cancer research?

The two degrees are actually a perfect combination. After finishing my PhD I did about eight years of basic science which was very rewarding, but also a little heartbreaking because I never saw the work translated. That’s what made me do the MBA – now I get to see all the cool science and get to see them translate – at Stanford University no less. How perfect is that?

Get the Right Skills to Maximize Your Business Development Activity at #BIO2017

There is no better place to make the connections you need to secure licensing, investment and procurement deals than BIO One-on-One PartneringTM meetings at BIO 2017, and no better program to prepare you than the BIO Executive Training Workshops, held June 17-19 immediately prior to the BIO International Convention in San Diego.

The BIO Business Development Fundamentals and Advanced Business Development Courses are aimed at helping to prepare you for the partnering, networking, and deal-making activity at BIO’s portfolio of partnering and investment conferences and help you maximize your deal-making at this year’s BIO International Convention.

The BIO International Convention hosts 35,000+ partnering meetings among 3,600+ biotechnology companies in 3.5 days. Are you prepared to engage in discussion about:

  • Valuation and Deal Structuring Concepts and Trends?
  • Financial Modeling and Valuation in Licensing?
  • The Role of Intellectual Property In Creating Value?
  • Market Models, Competition, Cash Flow Estimates?

Save $300 on a BIO Executive Training Course when you register for Convention Access at the BIO International Convention. Register for the Fundamentals or Advanced Course today and expand your partnering toolbox!

http://convention.bio.org/exectraining/

Each course is taught by experienced business development professionals from leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms, and experts from the fields of law and public relations. All instructors have deep hands-on experience with deals and licensing in the biotech industry.

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#BIO2017: A Peek at Partnering | UC Berkeley

Breaking Buzz is BIO’s newest blog series that reaches across the globe to bring you an insider’s preview into the hottest international and partnering trends coming to San Diego for the BIO International Convention.

A Day in the Life of a Partnering Powerhouse

UC Berkeley has had a whopping 600+ products commercialized from its research since it started counting in the 1980s. Its success stories range from mega blockbusters like CRISPR/CAS 9 to some of the early research and development of iplimumab. No matter how large or small, each of the hundreds of products is worthy of fulfilling the Berkeley School of Public Health’s mission: to improve population health, especially for the most vulnerable.

One big obstacle, however, is that as a non-profit, Berkeley is unable to commercialize the cool technologies being developed on campus, so they have to look at things differently than many of their research and development counterparts. Top of the list: they must find industry partners to license their IP. This takes time, instinctive focus and without a doubt, stamina.

Akash Bakshi, Berkeley’s resident IP and industry research authority, knows all about trusting his instincts and building stamina. He singularly held 59 BIO One-on-One Partnering™ meetings last year at the BIO International Convention in San Francisco; with a remarkable 75% follow-up return – an accomplishment he says required first and foremost, persistence.

Breaking Buzz talks with the persistent partnering Phenom in a recent interview:

AKASH:  Be persistent because companies are busy. Don’t leave it to them to sort though and find your invitation. If you haven’t heard back and your gut tells you there’s a good reason to connect, persist!

BB: There are thousands of companies within the partnering system. How do you know who to pursue?

AKASH: I look for companies that overlap with our research strengths – whether in biomedical engineering, immunology, or molecular and cellular biology, companies who seek new insight in the life sciences. Those are the ones that always make great partners!

BB: Can you tell us more about what happened after the 59 meetings in San Francisco last year?

AKASH: Almost 75% of the meetings we set up last year resulted in further discussions about UC Berkeley’s Innovation Ecosystem, IP licensing, and even employment for our students. I attribute the high return rate on Berkeley’s breadth and research strengths. People understand we are a powerhouse for early-stage R&D. Industry knows we have the intellectual capital to do amazing stuff.

BB: How do you characterize a successful Partnering experience?

AKASH: Some folks might assess their success at BIO as the number of transactions that were completed; our view is that this is more about relationships. Success comes anytime we can collaborate to improve or validate early-stage findings and licensing IP; when we get feedback on potential technologies, investments and funding for our startups, and the hiring of our graduates.

The other side of the story is that we get good insight from industry about why they were NOT currently interested in the ideas we presented – it might be because regulatory hurdles are too high, or the project is too small. Regardless, it’s allowed me to give feedback to the faculty member to rethink the original applications.

BB: Who is on your radar as we approach the BIO International Convention in San Diego?

AKASH:  There are updates that I’m eager to share with some of the people I met with last year in San Francisco. But I’m just as excited about finding new partners this June in San Diego; companies that share our quest for innovation in the life sciences.

BB: Sounds like you’ll have another very busy BIO experience. How do you do it?

AKASH: This year there will be two of us, so my record of 59 meetings will hopefully double. But ultimately, I focus on the satisfaction I get from finding and developing ongoing relationships within an industry I love.

Well that, and a steady stream of Venti Caffe Lattes!

 

BIO Anticipates Unprecedented Partnering Growth at #BIO2017

BIO’s One-on-one Partnering™ system will likely host 1,100 partnering meetings per hour during this year’s BIO International Convention. The program is the largest partnering program under one roof and is expected to host 40,000 meetings at BIO 2017 in San Diego, June 19 – 22. The versatile system is one of the biggest draws to the Convention, allowing users to create profiles containing company presentations, clinical trial data, YouTube videos—anything that will show what the organization is about and help it reach its target audience. Since 2015, the partnering system has grown by 23% and the steady growth is expected to continue at this year’s event.

During a recent webinar on tips for getting the most out of BIO’s One-on-One Partnering™, participants learned that getting started early is the key to success. With more than 42% of Convention attendees at the CEO, VPs or C-level, and a third of the attendees coming from outside the United States, it is important to get in line early to maximize the ROI. Analysis of prior meetings showed that companies starting the process early booked 11 times more meetings than those waiting until the last minute. Another reason to start early is the discounted registration rate available now through April 27.

The system opened in mid-April, so let the fun begin! Once your meeting requests are accepted BIO does all the scheduling (in late May).

Making the system even more convenient is the new mobile app—found in google and apple stores – that permits access to scheduled meetings and programming. During the Convention, the partnering meetings begin on the afternoon of Monday, June 19 and finish on Thursday, June 22. Meetings are scheduled in both the BIO Business Forum and exhibitor booths.

Other important advice? Concise, targeted subject lines and specific, detailed profiles go a long way to scoring the meetings you want. Instead of “Request a Meeting”, better to say “Our CAR-T technology addresses X disease”. This helps you get to the top of the list of people looking for that specific technology. Also, make sure the company profile is as up to date as possible, including such things as development phase, therapeutic areas, financing secured to date, geographic location etc.

More tips and detailed information about partnering are available in this webinar posted on BIO’s YouTube Channel.

Who will be the 2017 Buzz of BIO?

Voting is now open for the Buzz of BIO at the 2017 BIO International Convention! The Buzz of BIO contest recognizes highly innovative companies in the biotech sector and helps position these companies to develop strategic partnerships within the industry.

Cast your vote once per day in each of the two categories, Pipelines of Promise and Technologies of Tomorrow. One vote per person, per day will be strictly enforced. Two winners, one from each category, will be chosen based on the most number of votes received during the voting period. Each winner will receive one complimentary Convention Access & Partnering pass as well as a Company Presentation, plus promotion to industry leaders.

Voting is open until April 12, 2017 at 5pm ET. Winners will be announced April 18th. Good luck to all the nominees!

Who will be the 2017 Buzz of BIO?

Voting is now open for the Buzz of BIO at the 2017 BIO International Convention! The Buzz of BIO contest recognizes highly innovative companies in the biotech sector and helps position these companies to develop strategic partnerships within the industry.

Cast your vote once per day in each of the two categories, Pipelines of Promise and Technologies of Tomorrow. One vote per person, per day will be strictly enforced. Two winners, one from each category, will be chosen based on the most number of votes received during the voting period. Each winner will receive one complimentary Convention Access & Partnering pass as well as a Company Presentation, plus promotion to industry leaders.

Voting is open until April 12, 2017 at 5pm ET. Winners will be announced April 18th. Good luck to all the nominees!

#BIO2017: A Peek at Pavilions | European Commission

Breaking Buzz is BIO’s newest blog series that reaches across the globe to bring an insider’s preview into the hottest international and partnering trends coming to San Diego for the BIO International Convention.

The €80 billion Incentive in Europe

The buzz words in Brussels right now are breakthrough, inclusion, and flexibility, as the European Commission touts big innovations underway throughout Europe. This is especially good news for SMEs who seek substantial funding, pain-free internationalization, and an environment of sustainable growth – all things backed up by nearly €80 billion available through Horizon 2020, the European framework program for research and innovation. This, plus innovative incentives, customization, and bold partnering opportunities serve as the EC’s global calling card that will be on deck at the BIO International Convention this June in San Diego, California.

“Horizon 2020, launched in 2014, is the initiative behind this €80 billion investment and is fully backed by the European Parliament. It is the biggest integrated research funding programme undertaken by the European Union ever; in fact, it’s among the largest in the world,” according to Ruxandra Draghia-Akli, the Deputy Director-General for Research Programmes at the European Commission who is clearly enthusiastic about the landscape before her. “It provides tailor-made instruments for the varying needs of health research companies and SMEs. It’s designed for companies looking for high growth – with disruptive ideas – offering them funding and aggressive business support.”

The instruments to which she refers are the very components that make up Horizon 2020: sizable grants for large collaborative projects, world-class business support and mentoring, and robust partnerships between public, private, academic and industrial researcher enterprises – each with open access to a huge common European market.

Think of it as a harmonization among scientific and regulatory experts in Member states across the EU, working together and actually delivering open and transparent policy.

Tuned-in to this harmony is Meelis Kadaja, Director of Business Development for Icosagen, a research provider for biopharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. “Participation in Horizon 2020 has given us the opportunity to redefine the identity of our company and bring a novel technology to the market that enables us to become a front runner in our field. It has served as a proof of high quality of research and innovation done for our customers and partners, and helped us to gain their trust.”

Mr. Kadaja points out that the most appealing part of participating in Horizon 2020, in addition to the €1,129,800, is the non-dilutive funding and support of innovation, and its commercialization. It promotes, in his words, a “feeling that your work matters to the EU.”

Back at the European Commission Dr. Draghia-Akli stresses, “We are looking for highly innovative SMEs with global ambitions, companies that are emboldened to grow. We want you to know for certain that Europe is open for business in a big way, and we have considerable support for SMEs operating in the life science cycle, particularly those with breakthrough innovation.”

The application process for Horizon 2020 is entirely online. To apply, click Apply Here.

To learn more about Horizon 2020 and other initiatives, visit the European Commission Pavilion at the upcoming BIO International Convention, June 19-22, 2017 in San Diego where you will find:

Ruxandra Draghia-Akli, Deputy Director-General Research and Innovation, European Commission
Carlo Incerti, Genzyme, Head Global Medical Affairs, Chair EuropaBio
Chris Austin, Director NCATS, IRDiRC Chair
Katherine Needleman, FDA Office of Orphan Products Development
Diego Ardigo, Chiesi Farmaceutici, Chair of the Therapies Scientific Committee, IRDiRC

Dr. Draghia-Akli will also be a panelist for a session entitled “Fast Track to Orphan Drugs”.

About the Session:

Tuesday, June 20th, 4:15 – 5:15
Over the last years, the number of Orphan Medicinal Products drugs being developed has rapidly increased, but most of the 6,000-8,000 rare diseases still lack proper diagnosis or treatment. However, new development opportunities stemming from the wealth of recent scientific discoveries, disease understanding and new potential targets are becoming available. This is the result of coordinated research investments and stakeholder worldwide collaborations initiated by the International Rare Diseases Research Consortium. In addition, the US Food and Drug Administration and the European Medicines Agency are stepping up their joint collaboration to boost the development of orphan medicines. This session aims to present opportunities for public funding and regulatory support for orphan drug development available in Europe and the US with testimonies from companies benefitting from such support and stakeholder collaboration.

Moderator

Carlo Incerti, Genzyme, Head Global Medical Affairs, Chair EuropaBio

Speakers

Ruxandra Draghia–Akli, Deputy Director–General Research and Innovation, European Commission
Chris Austin, Director NCATS, IRDiRC Chair
Katherine Needleman, FDA Office of Orphan Products Development
Marisa Papaluca, Senior Science Advisor, European Medicines Agency
Diego Ardigo – Chiesi Farmaceutici, IRDiRC Chair of the Therapies Scientific Committee

Dr. Draghia-Akli, Deputy Director- General for Research Programmes at the European Commission’s Directorate General for Research and Innovation is a recognized leader in DNA delivery for therapeutic and vaccination applications, and has also served as an ad hoc reviewer for granting agencies including the USDA, NIH, as well as the European Union.

Athena Staton serves as executive editor for BIO Buzz, the Official Show Daily for the BIO International Convention, and BIO’s Breaking Buzz blog series.