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Korean bio firms to seek new opportunities at int'l convention in Boston

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Seen is a concept image of Samsung Biologics' promotional booth at BIO International Convention, which will be held in Boston from Monday to Thursday. Courtesy of Samsung Biologics
Seen is a concept image of Samsung Biologics' promotional booth at BIO International Convention, which will be held in Boston from Monday to Thursday. Courtesy of Samsung Biologics

By Baek Byung-yeul

Samsung Biologics, Celltrion and other Korean biotechnology companies are heading to Boston to take part in the BIO International Convention, also known as BIO USA, to promote their technologies and products and to seek new business opportunities at one of the largest exhibitions in the global bio industry, according to the companies, Sunday.

This year's BIO USA will take place in Boston from Monday to Thursday (local time). Organized by the Biotechnology Innovation Organization, the convention is one of the largest events for the global bio industry along with the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference, involving significant technology transfer contracts, R&D collaboration, M&As and investments.

The 2023 event will feature more than 9,000 companies from 65 countries. Last year, 255 Korean companies took part in the event. This year, the number of Korean companies has risen to 544. This means Korea will rank second after the U.S. in terms of the number of participating companies and organizations.

"At a time when more business exchanges in the biotechnology industry between Korea and the U.S. have been taking place actively, many Korean companies are joining the event hoping to promote their technological capabilities and to ink contracts," an official in the local bio industry said on condition of anonymity.

The central theme of this year's event is Stand Up for Science, in order to highlight the need for advanced biotechnology to improve the lives of people. Organizers said the theme is significant, since this year's event is the first to be held after the World Health Organization officially declared on May 5 that COVID-19 is no longer a global health emergency.

Among Korean companies, Samsung Biologics will join the event for the 11th straight year and feature the second-largest promotional booth among participating businesses.

"Under the theme of Your Sustainable Partner, Samsung Biologics decorates its booth with eco-friendly materials such as wood, stone, cloth and recycled materials while minimizing the use of plastic. Visitors will be provided with digital brochures via QR codes, eco-friendly souvenirs and jute bags to promote its vision of becoming a sustainable contract development and manufacturing organization," Samsung Biologics said.

The company will especially focus on showcasing the competitiveness of its contract development organization business, which develops medicines, including antibody-drug conjugate drugs and messenger RNA (mRNA) drugs, at the request of a client company that lacks medical development facilities,.

Celltrion, which is set to release in the U.S. this year Yuflyma, a biosimilar drug for autoimmune disease treatment Humira, will showcase its products. Lotte Biologics will also make its second appearance to promote plans to have three factories with 360,000-liter drug manufacturing capacities by 2030.

SK bioscience, a vaccine developer and manufacturer, will promote its vaccine business capability and business model, which transfers R&D and production to regional governments and partners in overseas countries to build production infrastructure that meets the needs of each region.

The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, together with the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency and the Korea Biotechnology Industry Organization, will run the Korea Pavilion at the exhibition to help 20 Korean biotech companies promote their products to the global market.

Baek Byung-yeul


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