Update on Opportunities in China: Developing Your China Strategy

China’s biotech sector continues to experience double-digit growth and is established as second most important global market after the US. China’s leaders are firmly backing the sector, singling genetics and biotech out in the latest Five-Year Plan, alongside AI, quantum technologies and semiconductors, as strategic national priorities. The COVID-19 pandemic has only served to accelerate investment, with venture capital and private equity investment pouring into the sector.

However, China also presents dilemmas for Western biotech companies. Increased geopolitical tensions with the West, international travel restrictions and a host of practical business challenges (including complex local regulations, IP protection issues, and culture/communication challenges) can dissuade many businesses from fully engaging with the opportunity China represents.

Join this session to hear from China experts on the wider market opportunity and to gain valuable advice on how to best access the market, engage with investors, and develop a China strategy.


11.00                  Introductions/housekeeping

                             Josh Berlin, Head of Global Business Development, Conferences & China/Asia Strategy, BioCentury

11.05                  China Biotech Market Overview

                            Fangning Zhang, Partner, Shanghai, McKinsey & Company          

11.25                  Practical Guide on Doing Business with China

                             Mark Hedley, Director, China-Britain Business Council

11.35                  Working with Chinese Biotech Investors

                             Sven Agten, Agio Capital & Business Solutions

11.45                  Q&A


Confirmed speakers

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Sven Agten


Agio Capital & Business Solutions

Sven Agten has been living and working in China since 2004. He had a corporate career at several MNCs before he co-founded Agio Capital & Business Solutions, a financial advisory focusing on Europe-China investment and licensing deals in different tech sectors but primarily in the healthcare space. Over the last year alone Agio Capital & Business Solutions has closed 6 deals between European biotechs and medtechs on the one side, and Chinese investors and partners on the other side.

Sven speaks Chinese fluently and lives with his Chinese wife and two children in Shanghai. He is also a published author and columnist for newspapers and magazines and writes mainly about business in China. His books are translated in several languages. His 17 years of experience in the country earned him a great deal of expertise in the Chinese business world, economic trends and the rapidly changing development of the country.

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Josh Berlin

Executive Director of Business Development


Josh leads BioCentury’s Business Development team and is responsible for building BioCentury’s corporate relationships with biopharma executives, investors and key industry stakeholders. He has dedicated much of his career to building cross-border relationships between Asia, in particular China, and the West. In this capacity, Josh created and manages BioCentury’s China Healthcare Summit conference for Chinese and Western biopharma executives and investors, in collaboration with BayHelix.

Prior to joining BioCentury in 2014, Josh created and led the emerging markets group for Elsevier Business Intelligence. He is a member of BayHelix, the professional organization for China life sciences executives, and serves on the editorial board of the World Korea Medical Journal. Josh graduated from the University of Virginia with a B.A. in Economics and International Relations.

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Mark Hedley

Director, Knowledge Economy

China-Britain Business Council

Mark Hedley is CBBC’s Director for the Knowledge Economy sector, working with clients across the tech, innovation, and healthcare sectors. Prior to joining CBBC, Mark spent several years in a market entry consulting roles for Intralink Group and B2B International, specialising in helping Western multinationals and SMEs to enter and expand into East Asian markets. He has particular expertise in China market entry research, and has worked with a variety of clients in the biotech, medical device, and healthcare sectors. Mark is a fluent Mandarin speaker, holds a Masters in Chinese Business from Sheffield University and an MBA from Lancaster University.

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Fangning Zhang

Partner, Shanghai


Fangning is a leader of the Pharmaceuticals & Medical Products Practice in Greater China and for the last 14 years has served pharmaceutical and medtech companies on topics related to business strategy, R&D, medical affairs, organization, and transformation. She began her career with McKinsey in the New Jersey office before moving to Shanghai in 2010.

Before joining McKinsey, Fangning worked as a research scientist at Pfizer’s Global R&D center, conducting drug-discovery research as a medicinal chemist in anti-infectives, immunology, and oncology. She earned her MBA in marketin

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