BIO.NRW – Business for Biotech
BIO.NRW is the active biotechnology cluster of North Rhine- Westphalia (NRW) since 2008. We catalyze the sustainable development of the state’s biotech sector by building on NRW’s strengths in industrial and pharmaceutical biotechnology, and in enabling technologies. BIO.NRW is part of a state government initiative, which aims to position NRW as Germany’s number one state for innovation.
The accompanying BIO Clustermanagement GmbH is founding member of the EIT Health, one of the largest healthcare initatives worldwide, and since 2015 associate member.
A Snapshot of NRW’s Biotech Sector
North Rhine-Westphalia is situated at Europe’s geographic and economic center. It is the largest of Germany’s 16 federal states, and the number one exporter.
North Rhine-Westphalia, together with Bavaria, was ranked as the No 1 biopharmaceutical cluster the second year in a row (according to GEN Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News).
A multitude of successful start-up and spin-off companies have been launched in NRW alongside a strong chemical and pharmaceutical presence. In total, the state is home to more than 400 life science companies, among them 105 core biotechnology firms that together account for 44% of the German biotech turnover (according to the OECD definition). It is also Europe’s number one in patenting biotech inventions (according to OECD Biotechnology statistics).
With 60 universities and research institutions that conduct life science research, NRW also enjoys the highest concentration of academic institutions within Europe. These include seven Max-Planck-Society life science research institutes. There are three Helmholtz research centres, three Fraunhofer Institutes and seven Leibniz Association facilities.
One notable strength of NRW’s biotech industry is industrial (‘white’) biotechnology, which benefits from the states strong chemical industry. The sector is connected by the Cluster of Industrial Biotechnology, named CLIB2021.
Beyond ‘white biotech’, the pharmaceutical ‘red’ biotech sector is also strong e.g. especially in personalized medicine. In 2014, some 45% of the biotech companies in NRW were actively developing new drugs and diagnostics. Some, like Bayer HealthCare, Grünenthal and UCB are global players in the pharmaceutical sector. Same goes for diagnostics with e.g. Qiagen and Miltenyi Biotec. In Q 12015, the drug pipeline of all companies combined contained 64 products and candidates. 7 of these were drugs already on the market, 12 were in clinical phases I–III. To support and develop pharmaceutical biotechnology, BIO.NRW founded the strategic initiative BIO.NRW.red. The aim is to build a sustainable network that connects the major contributors to medicine, healthcare, the pharmaceutical industry and red biotechnology in the state.
Our Services Include:
Tech transfer support is a key contribution from BIO. NRW. We organize events, working platforms and meetings to promote the dialogue between business, research, investors and policy-makers and to activate cooperation.
Biotech Business & Sciences
BIO.NRW compiles comprehensive and current online databases of academic institutions and companies active in the life sciences in NRW. Free to access and easy-to-use, these resources are valuable tools for identifying business partners.
Fairs, Exhibitions and Conferences
Companies and academic institutions can generate awareness of their activities locally, nationally and internationally by being a part of the BIO.NRW common stands on fairs, exhibitions and conferences. BIO.NRW also organizes a series of workshops and symposia, called BIO.NRW.academy.
Support of Young Professionals
BIO.NRW takes a special interest in supporting young professionals in biotechnology. We organize conventions (BIO.NRW (PhD) Student Convention) where graduates meet representatives from industry and academic science. The ‘Business Angel Network– BIO.NRW’ helps financing and funding biotech start- ups. In addition, a forum that brings together investment institutions, private investors, business angels and developers provides information about the current NRW biotech scene.