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home > ebr > winter 2001 > venture capital - making a business out of biotechnology
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European Biopharmaceutical Review

Venture Capital - Making a Business Out of Biotechnology

A symbiotic relationship has always existed between biotechnology companies and their venture capital investors. Biotechnology companies cannot start to operate without funding, and venture capital firms cannot exist without technology or products in which to invest. As the European biotechnology sector matures, biotechnology companies have created increasingly varied and sophisticated business models in an attempt to attract investment. The venture capital firms, in turn, have also become more selective in identifying those companies with business strategies that are most likely to succeed.The symbiosis between the two parties is becoming increasingly complex and intertwined. Indeed, as venture capital firms grow and gain experience, they seek to actively engage the biotechnology community. This is not only to identify new investment opportunities in technologies with the potential to benefit human health care, but also to share their experienceand highlight those business strategies and technologies they envisage being at the core of future successful biotechnology companies.


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By Bob Damms, Head of Technology at Merlin Biosciences

Bob Damms joined Merlin in June 2000 as Head of Technology, following seven years with PA Consulting Group where he rose to become Managing Consultant in 1992. Whilst there, he focused on the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors, ultimately taking responsibility for developing business in the emerging biopharmaceutical sector. Between 1988 and 1993 he carried out research at ICI Pharmaceuticals Division.
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Bob Damms
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