BIOTECHNICA 2013 Delivers Solid Performance
10/10/2013 8:27:09 AM
Hannover, Germany. BIOTECHNICA 2013 was all about signing deals, networking and building partnerships. As Europe’s flagship fair for biotechnology, the life sciences and lab technology, the three-day BIOTECHNICA in Hannover served as the central hub for the entire European biotech industry. As BIOTECHNICA drew to a close on Thursday, its organizers at Deutsche Messe expressed keen satisfaction with the outcome of the show. Exhibitors and visitors gave the event top marks for its chosen keynote theme, bio-economics, as well as for Switzerland’s Partner Country showcase.
As Dr. Jochen Köckler, Managing Board member at Hannover-based Deutsche Messe put it: “BIOTECHNICA featured a highly innovative sector which is clearly committed to delivering the processes and technologies needed to address the major challenges of the future. Across a broad spectrum – from cosmetics and food products to cancer drugs – this BIOTECHNICA has impressively documented the pivotal role biotechnology is set to play in every segment of our lives, as well as in tomorrow’s economy.”
A total of 616 exhibitors from 28 different countries were in Hannover from 8 to 10 October to present their latest research findings, equipment, technological approaches and innovations for the fields of medicine, food production, industry and environmental protection. Alongside the themes of energy efficiency and bio-economics – i.e. the processes and technologies needed to replace our dependence on fossil fuels with a sustainable, bio-based economy – this year’s BIOTECHNICA put the spotlight on personalized medical technology, biotech solutions for the food industry and industrial biotechnology. The wide array of innovations on display for each of these sectors underscored the biotech industry’s undiminished performance and innovative spirit. Personalized medical technologies – with their goal of shaping diagnostics and therapy around each patient’s unique specifics – proved to be a major drawing card at the show.
This year’s keynote theme of bio-economics went down extremely well. “Bio-economics is going to be a core topic in the society of the future,” said Köckler. “Bio-based processes and methods will help us to deal with the growing scarcity of resources and feed the world’s population.” This edition of BIOTECHNICA served to highlight the immense contribution that bio-economics can make to efficient food production and cutting-edge chemical production processes.
Companies have already begun to recognize the huge potential behind bio-economics. “BIOTECHNICA’s strong emphasis on research is a perfect fit for us. The keynote theme of bio-economics has been widely discussed at our company and is becoming increasingly important in everything we do. So we are delighted with our time at the show. We have met large numbers of clients and visitors interested in what we have to offer. For businesses in European countries in particular, this event is a must,” reported Krzysztof Lemke, Head of R&D, biovico, based in Gdynia, Poland.
To ensure targeted coverage of each and every major theme, BIOTECHNICA 2013 featured a series of themed marketplaces, each with an accompanying forum. The aim was to make it easy for attendees to discover all the most important advances and get a full grasp of what each market has to offer. “BIOTECHNICA is a comprehensive tradeshow reflecting the diversity of the international market. Its new marketplace approach is ideal for sharing expertise and promoting knowledge transfer between the worlds of research and industry, thus bringing real benefits to us and our partners here at BIOTECHNICA,” commented Dr. Volker Heinz, director and CEO of the German Institute of Food Technologies (DIL) from Quakenbrück, Germany.
As BIOTECHNICA’s first-ever Partner Country, Switzerland headed up the international exhibitor rankings, successfully profiling itself as a dynamic biotech nation. More than 70 Swiss firms and research institutes were on hand to showcase many impressive examples of the enormous potential and innovative spirit of Switzerland’s biotech industry. “Switzerland’s strong showing as BIOTECHNICA’s Partner Country has led to a substantial upswing in the country’s collaboration with international counterparts. This applies to businesses as well as institutions and industry associations,” said Domenico Alexakis, Director of the Swiss Biotech Association, Zurich. One of the highlights at the association’s stand was the Innovation Wall, which illustrated every step of the way from innovative ideas right on up to market-ready products and services.
The three-day trade fair attracted a total of over 10,000 visitors. Almost 50% of all visitors said they were attending BIOTECHNICA in order to get new inspiration for product development purposes. Exhibitors praised the professional caliber and decision-making status of the show’s attendees. “This is our second time at BIOTECHNICA, and the event has significantly exceeded our expectations. Our objectives were to showcase our company, meet potential cooperation partners and revitalize old contacts, plus generate new leads. Across the board, we were delighted with the results. Many of our visitors – from Germany as well as abroad – approached us with specific projects in mind, while others came to our stand just out of general interest in what we do,” said Dr. Katrin Geissler, responsible for biosystems ingredient research at Symrise in Holzminden, Germany.
Approximately 20% of all attendees came from outside Germany. There was a marked increase in attendance from western European, non-EU nations, as well as from Asia. Among the show’s foreign visitors, the strongest turnouts were from the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Switzerland and France.
Supporting program of conferences, forums and workshops
The main motivating factors for attending BIOTECHNICA were found to be business objectives, along with an interest in new expertise and knowledge transfer. Networking between R&D and industry was at the very top of the agenda, and BIOTECHNICA 2013 did justice to this with a comprehensive supporting program of conferences, forums and workshops. Highlights included the iFood Conference, where experts from research institutions and the food industry were on hand to discuss new approaches to food production. Also featured was the Innovation in Food Symposium devoted to food safety. The Bio@venture Conference was designed to bring together startup businesses and potential venture capital providers.
Career opportunities and recruitment were also on the agenda at BIOTECHNICA 2013. Leading enterprises such as Merck, Olympus Europe and Thermo Fisher Scientific made use of the “jobvector career day” to meet up with potential applicants and specialists. And the TectoYou initiative featured a series of guided tours and workshops, offering science students and recent graduates an opportunity to get to know the industry and make contact with potential employers.
Another highlight at the event consisted of the presentation of the 10th EUROPEAN BIOTECHNICA AWARD at the opening ceremony. This year’s prize went to the German biotech company Brain AG from the town of Zwingenberg, in recognition of its contribution towards the sustainable leveraging of biological expertise for the bio-economy.
The next BIOTECHNICA will be staged from 6 to 8 October 2015.
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