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The 110 professionals that make up the Catalan delegation coordinated by Biocat to the top global biotechnology convention have arrived in Boston to begin their participation in BIO 2012 today. A total of 50 companies —32 of which have their own booth— and 22 research and sector-support organizations make up the delegation of the BioRegion of Catalonia to the twentieth BIO International Convention, held in the capital of Massachusetts from 18 to 21 June 2012 under the slogan Connect, partner and innovate.

At the 2012 edition, the Spanish pavilion is the most important international pavilion, with Catalonia making up more than 60% of the national participation, ahead of countries like Brazil, China, India and Russia in number of companies. The Spanish pavilion is located at a key spot in the fair, just in front of the host state of Massachusetts. In addition to the companies and organizations in the Catalan delegation, the pavilion, which has 600 square meters of floor space, includes 8 companies from the Andalusia BioRegion, 7 from BioBasque and 7 from the rest of Spain.

BIO is the top global business meeting in the biotechnology arena. This year it will bring together more than 15,000 delegates from 65 countries, more than 900 exhibitors and 1,800 companies. In addition to the exhibition area, it also features a Business Forum for partnering meetings, which in 2011 generated more than 21,000 one-to-one meetings.

For the first time this year, the convention will feature a complementary partnering tool that allows companies to arrange meetings at the state pavilions. According to data from BIO on Sunday, companies in the Spanish pavilion, mostly from Catalonia, have already set up 380 meetings from the 2,137 contacts registered in the days before the fair. These figures make the Spanish pavilion the most active at BIO, with two times more meetings than any other participating state.

A packed institutional agenda
At this edition, the Catalan delegation is led by President of the Government of Catalonia Artur Mas, who will arrive in Boston on Tuesday 19 June in the afternoon and begin his activities in the capital of Massachusetts with a visit to MIT and a meeting with the Catalan community living there.

On Wednesday 20 June, the President of the Government of Catalonia is scheduled to visit the fair and meet with all of the companies and organizations in the delegation. At two in the afternoon, he is scheduled to meet with Governor of Massachusetts Deval Patrick to sign a collaboration agreement between Catalonia and this US state, which aims to promote bilateral cooperation in technology innovation and research and business cooperation in the fields of the life sciences, renewable energies, information and communication technology and facilities.

Afterwards, on Wednesday afternoon, Artur Mas will preside over the event to present the Catalonia Life Sciences Report 2011, at the Ernst & Young central headquarters, and the reception given by the Catalan delegation for their international partners. The event, which receives support from Amgen and collaboration from Damm, Gramona and the Mas Doix winery, is a networking meeting with more than 350 people, giving the Catalan delegates the opportunity to network with executives from large companies and representatives of the main European and American bioclusters.

On the morning of Thursday 21 June, the President of Catalonia is also scheduled to visit the company Instrumentation Laboratory, owned by the Catalan Werfen group, which specializes in medical technology and is participating in the Catalan delegation to BIO through Biokit, the group’s company specializing in in vitro diagnostics.

The institutional agenda also includes a visit to the Spanish pavilion from US Ambassador to Spain Alan Solomont (Wednesday 20 June, in the afternoon), and the presence, on the morning of Thursday 21 June, of the Prince of Asturias, who will visit the Spanish pavilion at BIO accompanied by Secretary of State for Commerce Jaime García-Legaz. Felipe de Borbón is scheduled to visit the business booths in the pavilion and then meet with representatives of the bioregions participating in BIO, of Asebio, of Genoma España and of various companies.

Oncocat network participates in the International Cancer Cluster Showcase
Under the framework of the breakout sessions at the fair, the International Cancer Cluster Showcase brought together more than one hundred representatives of companies and organizations working in the field of oncology research yesterday. During the event, the latest breakthroughs and R&D projects in cancer from Massachusetts, Quebec, Toulouse, Oslo, and the United Kingdom were presented.

Oncocat, the Catalan oncology network promoted by Biocat, presented the work carried out so far to coordinate research organizations, groups and centers, and hospitals and companies that conduct basic, translational and clinical oncology research in Catalonia. Two of the companies that belong to this network and have traveled with the Catalan delegation to Boston, Oryzon and AB-Therapeutics, also presented their projects at this event.

Business opportunities in Catalonia
On 20 June, under the framework of this year’s BIO, the prestigious international consultancy firm Ernst&Young, which specializes in the biotechnology arena, will present their Catalonia Life Sciences Report 2011, created from data on the sector collected by Biocat. Each year, this international firm publishes and presents at BIO their Beyond Borders report, the benchmark study in the sector (this year it will be presented on Tuesday 19 June at 10 am) and also periodically published reports on specific countries. The report to be presented on 20 June in Boston focusing on Catalonia, however, is the first the consulting firm has ever devoted to a BioRegion, which is undoubtedly a vote of confidence for the potential of the Catalan biocluster.

This report aims to provide an in-depth analysis of the current status of biotechnology, biomedicine and medical technology in Catalonia, in a global environment of economic instability, and to identify new challenges, strategies and perspectives for the future. This study is based on the 2011 Biocat Report created using data from surveys sent to 450 companies and 435 research groups active in the life sciences, the response rate for which was over 50%.

Twenty one percent of registered biotechnology companies in Spain are based in Catalonia, generating 30% of the Spanish economic activity in the life sciences arena, making this region the driving force for the national economy in this sector. One of the aims of this report is to identify the strengths, pending challenges and suitability of establishing long-term policies after making clear the importance of the biotechnology, biomedicine and medical technology sector in Catalonia. This sector aspires to become the driving force behind the Catalan economy and innovation.

Ernst & Young is one of the leading global providers of auditing, fiscal and legal services, transactions and consultancy. More than 152,000 professionals work to help companies from around the world identify and capitalize on business opportunities. One of their goals is to have a positive impact on business and markets, as well as society as a whole.

The event to present the report will feature: Glen Giovanetti, global director for the biotechnology sector at Ernst & Young; Montserrat Vendrell, CEO of Biocat; Susan R. Windham-Bannister, president of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center; Silvia Ondategui Parra, head of the Health and Pharmaceuticals sector in the Ernst & Young consultancy area; and, to close the event, President of the Government of Catalonia Artur Mas.

For more information:

Biocat Press Office · 662 315 523 ·

Adela Farré · +34 626 992 057 ·
Silvia Labé  · +34 662 315 400 ·

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Silvia LabéDirector of Marketing, Communications and Competitive Intelligence
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