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The Pimec employers’ association has recognized biotech firm AB-Biotics as the most competitive company in 2010 in the category of small companies. The 24th edition of these awards was held, as is tradition, at the association’s annual dinner, presided over by President of the Government of Catalonia Artur Mas, and held in the Palau de Congressos de Catalunya.

Only seven years since it was founded, AB-Biotics has become the only Catalan biotech firm –and the second in Spain- to be traded on the Alternative Stock Market (MAB). Furthermore, the company has just led the MAB’s first acquisition, purchasing Madrid-based company Quantum Experimental, an operation that will allow the company to offer integral market services, from discovery through patenting new products, the regulatory process and registration to final commercialization. This operation will open doors for the firm in international markets like Mexico and Brazil.

The jury –made up of noteworthy figures from the political, financial, economic and journalistic arenas- valued the turning point in the AB-Biotics’ evolution that took place in 2010, launching their first products to market. At the BioSpain fair, they presented their functional ingredient AB-LIFE, which can reduce cholesterol levels by 14% and is being commercialized by AB-Fortis, an iron microcapsule with five health claims approved by the European Food Safety Agency, including improved cognitive and mental development in children. In June, AB-Biotics will participate in the delegation of 42 Catalan companies to BIO Washington, coordinated by Biocat, where they will present these projects.

2010 also saw the launch to market of their first genetic analysis for personalized medicine: Neurofarmagen, which uses a saliva sample to predict a patient’s response to drugs used to treat depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and epilepsy.

65 candidates for Pimec awards

In total, there were 65 candidates for the Pimec awards this year from 57 companies. These awards have four categories: most competitive SME, most competitive retail establishment, Pimec Foundation award for business values and the award for linguistic quality in the business world. This year, a new award was added: recognition of entrepreneurship in business.

Up to 58% of the companies that opted for these awards were in the most competitive SME category; 7% most competitive retail establishment; 23% business values; and 12% linguistic quality in the business world.

The Pimes awards are open to all small and medium companies in Catalonia, from any field. The only requirements are to have less than 250 workers and turnover under €50 millions.

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