CEO Update|Monday 14 October

On Friday, we continued to grow our global alliances as the BIA and the Japanese Forum for Innovative Regenerative Medicine (FIRM) exchanged bilingual directories of our members operating in the Cell and Gene Therapy Space. On our side, the work is led by the Cell and Gene Therapy Advisory Committee (CGTAC).


BIA members can find our directory here. This exchange will improve collaboration, enabling global access to talent, expertise, education and partnerships. Read our press release here.


It’s a busy week here as tomorrow sees the close in voting for our Board elections, deadline 5pm – details here. Each BIA member company has a vote, which has been emailed to our primary contact in each member organisation. Most have chosen to vote via the link here. (Please remember that only one Ballot Paper may be completed by each member organisation and that only fully paid up Corporate, Associate and Network members are eligible to vote.) There are nine candidates standing for election to the Board as Corporate members and five candidates standing for election to the Board as Other members. Profiles of all the candidates can be found here.


I’m delighted to publish our Q3 update which showcases our work in influencing and shaping our sector in recent weeks, it’s great to see the variety of impacts members and secretariat are having working together.  


As Brexit uncertainty continues, the BIA continues to deliver Brexit Readiness events, providing answers to the question ‘What does Brexit mean for Biotechnology in the UK and beyond?’. Last Friday we were joined by Tim Sarson from KPMG, and he delivered a presentation on the impact of Brexit on business operations which you can watch here. It was great to see you all at our partner events last week in Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle and Liverpool. Brexit events continue over the coming weeks in Edinburgh and Cardiff, and our Bioscience forum will be hosting a free Brexit Readiness panel session. Please find our latest Brexit events here.


On Brexit news, last Friday the Government signed freight contracts worth £86.6m with four ferry companies enabling the transport of medicines in the event of a no-deal Brexit. The EU and UK continue to negotiate Brexit this week. We believe that continued co-operation with a UK voice at the technical table on developing medicines regulation is both achievable and in the best interest of all sides and patients across the globe.


The Queen’s Speech took place this morning, we are still analysing the detail and if there is sector related news we’ll update first via twitter and you can follow us here.


Good news this morning that BIA member Mogrify has raised $16 million to transform the development of life-saving cell therapies. Just last month Dr. Jane Osbourne OBE, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Bioindustry Association, was appointed as Chair of the Board at Mogrify. Mogrify launched in February 2019, announcing $3.7 million USD seed funding from Ahren, 24Haymarket and Dr. Darrin M. Disley, OBE and went on to secure grants from Innovate UK and SBRI Healthcare.


SRG, STEM Industry Recruitment specialist, has teamed up with New Scientist Jobs to create a comprehensive STEM industry & salary report, and we’d like as much individual input as we can. Please complete the survey here.


An event to look out for – BioBeat19- BIA members GSK and Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst are hosting a summit to explore the UK advantage in Cell and Gene Therapy. This is bound to be a thought-provoking event for scientists, investors and entrepreneurs, showcasing that work in this area is not just taking place in the USA, we have a fantastic cluster on our doorstep. The event will take place on 11 October in Stevenage, find out more here.