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Switzerland to be Showcased as BIOTECHNICA Partner Country in 2013  
6/18/2013 10:23:20 AM

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Hannover/Zurich. Switzerland will be the official Partner Country of BIOTECHNICA 2013. The Partner Country arrangement, the first ever for BIOTECHNICA, was announced recently by representatives of Deutsche Messe, based in Hannover, Germany, and the Zurich-based Swiss Biotech Association. "We are delighted to have Switzerland as the official Partner Country at BIOTECHNICA 2013. Switzerland is one of the strongest and most innovative biotech centers in the world," Deutsche Messe Board of Management member Dr. Jochen Köckler commented. "We are confident the partnership will be a boon to economic relations between Germany and Switzerland as well as the international biotechnology sector generally."

Switzerland is a world leader in biotechnology and has been one of the strongest exhibiting nations at BIOTECHNICA for many years. "We want to leverage the Partner Country showcase to highlight the enormous potential and immense innovative power of the Swiss biotechnology industry," Domenico Alexakis, Director of the Swiss Biotech Association, said. "As Europe's number one event for biotechnology and life sciences, BIOTECHNICA gives Swiss exhibitors a strong profile in the international market. It is the perfect platform for building and managing relationships between the Swiss biotech industry and Europe and the rest of the world. It is also an excellent forum for knowledge and technology transfer."

The central hub for Switzerland's showcase at BIOTECHNICA is the SWISS Pavilion, organized by Osec, Switzerland's international business development agency, in partnership with the Swiss Biotech Association. Located in Hall 9, the Pavilion will be home to representatives of Swiss biotech firms and the country's leading biotech regions and will showcase a wide range of services for biotechnology, life sciences and lab technology. It will be supported by a program of forums and special events that will provide ample opportunity for networking. Swiss companies who prefer to go it alone with their own display stands will still be able to draw on the synergies of the SWISS Pavilion by setting up in its immediate vicinity.

Switzerland - the ideal biotech incubator

The biotech industry is one of the mainstays of the Swiss economy, generating revenues of just under 9 billion Swiss francs in 2011. The country currently has around 240 biotechnology companies, including 174 core companies and 63 biotech suppliers, with a combined workforce of around 20,000.

Switzerland has ideal structures in place for the biotechnology industry. For many years, the Swiss federal government has been providing various forms of support to biotech enterprises, including research funding, allocated via the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), and education programs offered by institutions of higher learning. In recent years, the SNSF alone has invested some 760 million Swiss francs in biotech research. Similarly, Switzerland's Commission for Technology and Innovation (CTI) supports applied research and technology transfer through various types of grants for joint innovation projects between institutions of higher learning and SMEs.

This impressive level of funding is reflected in the number of biotech patents held by Swiss companies, which trebled between 2000 and 2009. Switzerland is even ahead of countries like the United States, Germany and France in the biotech patent stakes and has the highest number of biotechnology companies per capita in the world. "This has only been made possible thanks to close cooperation between Switzerland's established pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical technology companies and its financial institutions," Domenico Alexakis said. The Swiss Biotech Association fosters this targeted networking between government, academia, the biotech industry and the financial sector because it is committed to ensuring Switzerland's innovations base continues to receive the funding it needs for growth.

About BIOTECHNICA

BIOTECHNICA is Europe's leading trade fair for biotechnology, life sciences and laboratory technology. It will be held for the 20th time in 2013, running from 8 to 10 October, and will feature the latest innovations in all areas of biotechnology, from bioprocess engineering, bioanalytics and bioinformatics to biotech applications in pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, biomedicine, food, agriculture, industrial biotechnology and the environment. The ideas and innovations on show in these areas will be explored further in the fair's array of international conferences, special events and workshops.

About the Swiss Biotech Association

The Swiss Biotech Association (SBA) was founded in March 1998 and represents over 210 companies and institutions in the biotech industry. Membership of the SBA is open to organizations of all sizes and from all areas of the biotechnology sector, including organizations engaged in R&D, production, marketing, services and consulting. The Association's activities span various areas of biotechnology application, such as pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, agriculture, food, environmental technology and specialty chemicals.

Osec

Osec was founded as a nonprofit association in 1927. It informs, advises and supports SMEs from Switzerland and Liechtenstein in their international business ventures. It links companies, experts and private and public organizations around the world, helping promote dynamic foreign trade. As part of its export promotion brief, Osec organizes SWISS Pavilions at international trade fairs.

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