Skip to main content
Antonio Parente

president of the CataloniaBio

Antonio Parente, CEO and cofounder of Lipotec Group, has been named the new president of the CataloniaBio association for the next four years. The new head of the Catalan Association of Biotechnology Companies takes over for Carlos Buesa and will face the challenge of promoting the sector as a driving force for the economy and knowledge in our region.

What goals have you set for your next four years as head of the association?

CataloniaBio aims to meet the needs of all companies that belong to the association. Therefore, our first aim is to raise awareness of the biotech sector in society in order to improve acceptance and spark interest. That said, it is important to understand that CataloniaBio is made up of both SMEs and larger companies, so the needs of our members vary widely. However, the Board of Directors aims to meet all of these needs, particularly those related to space and funding. These two aspects are currently the most important concerns of companies in our area.

What will you do to improve companies’ access to funding?

We must create bridges between the financial and biotechnology sectors. We must communicate not only the risks but also the potential, benefits and activities of our sector in order to attract grants from the administration or funds from venture capital and investment entities.

Speaking of potential, the sector in Catalonia has grown 30% per year over the past decade...

We really need to appreciate the large science base that currently exists in Catalonia. Over the years we have established two top-notch science parks, many creative companies and a large number of highly qualified personnel, which are the backbone of the biotech sector in Catalonia. Nevertheless, we can’t settle for what we have achieved; we must work to correct the shortcomings of our industrial base. This is the root of the concerns members of CataloniaBio have regarding space, as we mentioned before.

How would you define, then, the position of the BioRegion compared to the rest of Europe?

From an industrial point of view there is still much to be done, as I said. The main aim of these four years could be precisely this. We must deal with the lack of infrastructure and confidence we are currently experiencing We also need to create more large companies so we can specialize in different areas of biotechnology in order to integrate them fully with the biotech communities in the United States and the rest of Europe. Therefore, one of the aids CataloniaBio offers its members is to establish a catalog of companies by country, size and activity, which allows us to evaluate the options and activities that best suit our sector.

So, can the next BIO-Europe Spring 2010 in Barcelona help integrate the Catalan biotech fabric with the rest of the world?

Of course. Bio-Europe Spring 2010 is an excellent opportunity to raise awareness as well as getting a first-hand look at what is happening around the world, both in technology and in business. Knowledge is reciprocal and we not only need to strengthen the BioRegion’s image abroad but also learn about what is going on in other countries with a more consolidated base in order to grow and innovate in our field. Here at CataloniaBio we hope to hold a special event in the framework of this congress, although we haven’t yet decided the best strategy to follow.

Speaking of this event, what is CataloniaBio’s relationship to Biocat?

Biocat is very important to us because our strategies are completely in line with theirs. We want a strong biotech sector and we must maintain open, clear lines of communication with Biocat to achieve this. Together we must see that both organizations can contribute to finding a solution that benefits everyone. Our association must be in line with the administration because together we are much stronger and will raise awareness of the BioRegion around the world.

Sign up for our newsletters

Stay up-to-date on the latest news, events and trends in the BioRegion.