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The Next Lap:
Biosciences in Singapore 2025
An  EIU  Healthcare  white  paper  
for  BioSingapore  
October  2015  
ExecuDve  summary  
Looking  back:  Recap  of  bioscience  sector  development, ...
Simranjit  Singh  
Execu1ve  Council,  BioSingapore  
General  Manager,  Medical  Devices  Asia,  Quin1les  
We  would  like  to  thank  all  the  industry  parDcipants  and  influencers  who  parDcipated,  whether ...
Executive summary
ingapore  is  entering  its  fourth  phase  of  bioscience  sector  development.  Over  the  
first  thre...
Looking back
Recap of bioscience sector
development in Singapore 2000–15
In  June  2000,  the  Singapore  government  laun...
How does Singapore compare?
With bioscience clusters in Israel,
Taiwan, South Korea
The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Sing...
New growth centres
Expand access to emerging markets
TradiDonally,  developed  countries  such  as  the  United  States  h...
Focus areas for investment
Maximise relevance and return
To  maximise  relevance  and  return  on  
investment,  elements ...
Accelerating commercialisation
Range of routes to market
The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   10  
Looking ...
Accelerating commercialisation
Range of routes to market
The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   11  
Boost  e...
Accelerating commercialisation
Range of routes to market
The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   12  
Ajract  ...
Next-generation talent
Commercial and convergence skills
Ajract  senior  talent  with  the  mulD-­‐
funcDonal  experience ...
The next ten years
Over  the  past  15  years,  Singapore  has  developed  into  a  renowned  bioscience  clust...
About BioSingapore
Clearstate  (,  a  business  of  the  Economist  Intelligence  Unit,  is  a  researc...
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BioSingapore Whitepaper - The Next Lap Biosciences in Singapore 2025


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BioSingapore whitepaper looking at the future of Biosciences in Singapore and the new opportunities ahead.

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BioSingapore Whitepaper - The Next Lap Biosciences in Singapore 2025

  1. 1. The Next Lap: Biosciences in Singapore 2025 An  EIU  Healthcare  white  paper   for  BioSingapore   October  2015  
  2. 2. Contents Foreword     Acknowledgements   ExecuDve  summary   Looking  back:  Recap  of  bioscience  sector  development,  2000–2015   Regional  cluster  comparison:  Singapore,  Israel,  Taiwan,  South  Korea   New  growth  centres:  Expand  access  to  emerging  markets   Focus  areas  for  investment:  Maximize  relevance  and  return   Accelerated  commercialisaDon:  Range  of  routes  to  market   Next-­‐generaDon  talent:  Commercial  and  convergence  skills   Conclusion:  The  next  ten  years   About  BioSingapore  &  Clearstate   The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   2       3   4   5   6   6   8   9   10   13   14  
  3. 3. Foreword Simranjit  Singh   Execu1ve  Council,  BioSingapore   General  Manager,  Medical  Devices  Asia,  Quin1les   2015  marks  a  milestone  year  for  Singapore  as  the  naDon   commemorates  its  50th  year  of  independence.  It  is  also  a   landmark  year  for  BioSingapore,  an  associaDon  for  the   Biosciences  industry  in  Singapore,  as  we  celebrate  our  10th   anniversary.  In  2000,  the  Singapore  government  launched  its   15-­‐year  roadmap  to  develop  and  promote  the  biosciences   industry.  This  roadmap  is  now  coming  to  its  tail  end  and   therefore  it  is  imperaDve  for  us  to  review  and  evaluate  the   achievements  &  challenges  encountered  in  the  development   of  the  Biosciences  industry  in  Singapore.  It  also  provides  an   opportunity  for  us  to  come  together  as  an  industry  to  help   shape  policy  to  further  drive  success  in  the  biosciences   industry  for  the  next  ten  years.   This  white  paper  has  elicited  views  from  a  broad  group  of   industry  parDcipants  about  the  future  of  the  Biosciences   industry  in  Singapore.  It  provides  themes  that  can  help  to   guide  the  development  of  innovaDve  ideas  to  propel  the  next   lap  of  Biosciences  growth  in  Singapore.  We  thank  all   parDcipants  for  their  Dme  and  support  for  the  white  paper.  We   hope  this  whitepaper  will  act  as  a  catalyst  for  greater   engagement  and  dialogue  and  spur  more  companies  &   individuals  to  be  part  of  the  BioSingapore  community.   We  would  like  thank  Clearstate  (EIU  Healthcare)  for  their  hard   work  and  effort  in  helping  to  conduct  the  interviews  and   pu^ng  together  this  white  paper.     The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   3  
  4. 4. Acknowledgements We  would  like  to  thank  all  the  industry  parDcipants  and  influencers  who  parDcipated,  whether  on  record  or   anonymously,  for  their  valuable  insights.   Interviewees   Abel  Ang,  Chief  OperaDng  Officer  at  Accuron  Technologies   Abhijit  Ghosh,  Partner,  PharmaceuDcal  Leader  &  Tax  Market  Counsel  Member  at  PricewaterhouseCoopers  Singapore   Benjamin  Seet,  ExecuDve  Director  of  the  Biomedical  Research  Council  at  the  Agency  for  Science,  Technology  and  Research   Brian  Henry,  ExecuDve  Director  and  Site  Lead,  Early  Discovery  Pharmacology  and  Exploratory  Sciences  at  MSD  TranslaDonal   Medicine  Research  Centre  Singapore   Carl  Firth,  CEO  of  ASLAN  PharmaceuDcals   Chua  Ean  Chin,  Country  Manager,  Singapore  at  Roche  DiagnosDcs  Singapore   Colin  Tan,  Chief  OperaDng  Officer  at  Endomaster   David  Dally,  CEO  at  MerLion  PharmaceuDcals   Elena  Rizova,  Vice  President  External  InnovaDon  Asia  Pacific  at  Johnson  &  Johnson  Singapore   Gideon  Ho,  ‎Co-­‐Founder  &  CEO  at  Histoindex   Jonathan  Kua,  Group  Director,  Industry  Development  Group  at  the  Agency  for  Science,  Technology  and  Research   ‎Jozica  Habijanic,  Head  of  Strategic  Development  at  Roche  DiagnosDcs  Asia-­‐Pacific   Julien  de  Salaberry,  Chief  InnovaDon  Officer  at  The  Propell  Group   Kevin  Lai,  ExecuDve  Director  Biomedical  Sciences  and  Consumer  Businesses  at  Singapore  Economic  Development  Board   KrisDna  Rutkute,  ScienDfic  Programme  Manager  for  SPRINT-­‐TB  at  the  Yong  Loo  Lin  School  of  Medicine,  NaDonal  University  of   Singapore   Lance  Lijle,  Managing  Director  at  Roche  DiagnosDcs  Asia-­‐Pacific   Leslie  Chaney,  Senior  Director  of  Asia-­‐Pacific  Commercial  OperaDons  at  Marken   Maha  Guruswamy,  Senior  Director  JAPAC  Service  at  Sciex   Margam  Chandrasekaran,  CEO  &  Chief  ScienDst  at  Bio-­‐Scaffold  InternaDonal   Michel  Birnbaum,  Entrepreneur  in  Residence  at  NTUiDve,  Nanyang  Technological  University   Nawal  Roy,  at  Founder  &  CEO  at  Holmusk   Neo  Kah  Yean,  Senior  Director  Vaccines  Asia-­‐Pacific  at  Janssen  Singapore   Nicholas  Paton,  Programme  Lead  for  SPRINT-­‐TB  at  the  Yong  Loo  Lin  School  of  Medicine,  NaDonal  University  of  Singapore   Patrik  Frei,  Founder  and  CEO  of  Venture  ValuaDon   Renaud  Jonquieres,  Vice  President  ASPAC  Industry  at  bioMerieux  Singapore   Ron  Snir,  Commercial  Ajaché  at  the  Israel  Trade  &  Economic  Office,  Embassy  of  Israel  in  Singapore   Rosaline  Chow  Koo,  Founder  &  CEO  at  ConneXionsAsia  (CXA)   Sharon  Chiang,  ‎Senior  Technology  Consultant  at  IPI  Singapore   Siew  Hwa  Ong,  Director  &  Chief  ScienDst  at  Acumen  Research  Laboratories   Simranjit  Singh,  General  Manager,  Medical  Devices  &  DiagnosDcs  Asia  and  Senior  Director,  Strategic  Planning  Asia  at  QuinDles   The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   4  
  5. 5. Executive summary ingapore  is  entering  its  fourth  phase  of  bioscience  sector  development.  Over  the   first  three  phases  in  the  past  fioeen  years,  Singapore  has  built  world-­‐class   infrastructure  for  bioscience  R&D  and  manufacturing,  and  ajracted  and   developed  skilled  talent  for  basic  as  well  as  translaDonal  research.   The  bioscience  sector  now  accounts  for  S$1.5B  in  total  R&D  expenditure  and  S$30B  in   manufacturing  output,  and  has  ajracted  R&D  partnerships  from  major  mulDnaDonal   companies  in  pharmaceuDcal  and  medical  device  segments.  In  terms  of  translaDng  to   commercial  success,  early  inspiraDons  include:  the  first  novel  drug  from  a  Singapore   company  to  achieve  FDA  approval    (MerLion  Pharma's  anDbioDc  -­‐  finafloxacin),  a  pipeline   relevant  to  local  disease  burden  including  gastric  cancer,  cardiovascular  and  metabolic   diseases,  and  a  slew  of  start-­‐ups  in  biopharma,  medical  device,  diagnosDcs  and  health   technology  segments  (Aslan,  Endomaster,  Veredus  DiagnosDcs,  ConneXionsAsia,  Healint,   and  many  others).   Though  Singapore  has  succeeded  in  building  a  reputaDon  as  a  regional  biomed  cluster,   challenges  remain.  With  limited  resources  and  rising  costs,  there  is  a  need  to  focus  R&D  on   areas  where  Singapore  has  a  disDncDve  edge.  CommercialisaDon  remains  at  an  early  stage,   with  gaps  in  venture  capital  and  complex  skill-­‐set  required  to  bring  healthcare  products  and   services  to  market.  Finally,  there  are  opportuniDes  leo  untapped  in  emerging  Asian   markets,  which  are  expanding  their  populaDons'  access  to  healthcare  with  the  result  of   soaring  demand  and  expenditure  on  medical  devices,  diagnosDcs,  therapeuDcs  and   technologies.   In  this  white  paper,  we  review  the  development  to  date  and  in  comparison  with  a  few  other   bioscience  clusters:  Israel,  Taiwan  and  South  Korea.  We  then  highlight  R&D,   commercialisaDon  and  talent  development  opportuniDes  that  can  help  Singapore  sustain   and  entrench  its  posiDon  over  the  next    10  years  as  the  Biopolis  of  Asia.   The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   5   S
  6. 6. Looking back Recap of bioscience sector development in Singapore 2000–15 In  June  2000,  the  Singapore  government  launched  its  iniDaDve  to  develop  Singapore  into  an   internaDonal  biomedical  sciences  hub:  the  ‘biopolis’  of  Asia,  one  of  the  most  research-­‐intensive,   innovaDve  and  entrepreneurial  economies.  The  bioscience  cluster  comprises  healthcare  services,   pharmaceuDcals  and  biotechnology,  medical  devices,  health  technologies,  and  food  &  nutriDon.   Much  of  the  current  Singapore  bioscience  cluster  did  not  exist  fioeen  years  ago,  and  has  taken  shape   as  the  result  of  a  top-­‐down  effort  to  rapidly  develop  excellence  in  research  and  development,   manufacturing  and  healthcare  delivery.  Three  government  agencies  –  the  Biomedical  Research  Council   (BMRC)  of  A*STAR,  the  Biomedical  Sciences  Group  (BMSG)    of  the  Economic  Development  Board,  and   the  NaDonal  Medical  Research  Council  (NMRC)  of  the  Ministry  of  Health  –  have  led  sector   development  thus  far.  CommercialisaDon  support  in  terms  of  grants,  incenDves  and  incubators  for   SMEs  also  comes  from  the  Standards,  ProducDvity  and  InnovaDon  Board  (SPRING  Singapore).   Singapore’s  bioscience  sector  has  developed  over  three  phases  during  the  past  fioeen  years:  world-­‐ class  infrastructure  purpose-­‐built  for  R&D  and  bio-­‐manufacturing  since  phase  1,  translaDonal  and   clinical  capabiliDes  assembled  in  phases  2  and  3,  and  commercialisaDon  gaining  tracDon  in  phase  3.   The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   6   S$30B Manufacturing output in 2012, up from S$6B in 2000 Bioscience  cluster  highlights   50R&D centres (2014) 29Spin-offs (2010–2014) Sources:  Biomedical  Sciences  Industry  in  Singapore,  EDB  (2014)   A*STAR  NaDonal  Survey  of  R&D  in  Singapore  2013  (2014),  A*STAR   Gross R&D expenditure S $1.5B (2013) Researchers 5,280 (2013) Manufacturing workforce 16,000 192 Patents awarded A*STAR institutes (2010– 2014) 7 in 10 Pharma firms manufacture in SG 50 Manufacturing plants in 2014 BERD 33% PUBERD 67% University 38% Public 38% Private 24% Medtech 63% Pharma 63% Research institutes and consortia established
  7. 7. How does Singapore compare? With bioscience clusters in Israel, Taiwan, South Korea The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   7   Israel Singapore Taiwan South Korea R&D intensity: GERD/ GDP 2011 Researchers in R&D / mil people 2011 Bioscience patent applications (2012) 451 104 N/A 1,168 Scientific American 2015 Worldview biotech rank # 18 # 5 # 25 # 23 3.97% 2.23% 2.30% 4.36% 6602 6494 7480 5928 Compared  with  regional  clusters,  Singapore  enjoys  an  enviable  posiDon  as  a  hub  for  commerce,   finance,  logisDcs  and  distribuDon,  besides  a  reputaDon  for  world-­‐class  infrastructure  as  well  as  skilled   and  diverse  talent.  Rising  costs  of  living  and  doing  business,  as  well  as  a  small  local  market  and  an   entrepreneurial  deficit,  are  the  major  challenges  for  the  bioscience  sector  in  Singapore.   ComparaDvely,  there  is  more  commercialisaDon  success  observed  in  Israel,  Taiwan  and  South  Korea.   These  clusters  draw  on  the  commercial  and  entrepreneurial  mind-­‐sets  of  their  workforce,  as  well  as   abundant  private  capital,  local  (industry-­‐academia)  as  well  as  inter-­‐country  collaboraDon,  and  focus  on   emerging  global  trends  in  biosciences.   Taiwan Biosciences a priority sector since 1980s, long-term goal is 3% of global biotech market Public research to preclinical stage and proof-of-concept, then licensed to local firms Strategic location for market access: near China, SEA, northeast Asia IPOs at NASDAQ-style bourse attract venture capital South Korea Large pharma market & clinical trial hub: 800+ companies, 100+ drugs to market Regional bio-clusters with R&D institutes and venture funding from diversified chaebol MNC R&D collaborations and licensing deals Government goal: top 7 pharma powerhouse by 2020 Israel Highly educated, driven and entrepreneurial people: 70-80 new life science firms annually High R&D spend: top in GERD & BERD (250 MNC R&D) as % GDP Abundant venture capital and access to US & EU markets Strong IT sector and framework to capitalise on big data Sources:  A*STAR,  Israel  Advanced  Technology  Industries,  ScienDfic   American,  World  Intellectual  Property  OrganisaDon  
  8. 8. New growth centres Expand access to emerging markets TradiDonally,  developed  countries  such  as  the  United  States  have  been  the  focus  for   healthcare  companies  worldwide,  with  high  spending  per  person  and  as  a  percentage  of  GDP.   However  these  are  increasingly  challenging  markets  to  serve,  with  governments  clamping   down  on  soaring  healthcare  costs.   Meanwhile,  emerging  markets  have  been  steadily  boosDng  their  expenditure  on  healthcare.   Universal  health  coverage  schemes  in  various  countries,  ageing,  urbanisaDon  and  affluence,   and  increasing  disease  burden  (parDcularly  for  non-­‐communicable  diseases)  are  boosDng   awareness  and  access  to  healthcare.  Given  Singapore's  proximity  to  ASEAN  countries  and   emerging  giants  such  as  China  and  India,  these  markets  present  a  vital  long-­‐term  opportunity.   The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   8   “There is a huge emerging market in China and India for frugal innovation in healthcare technology. But the barrier to capitalizing on this demand is that I don't see enough collaboration in Singapore with these two large markets. Many MNCs have R&D centres in Singapore as well as India and China, but there is very limited cooperation with these. This is a missed opportunity because of the speed of getting things done here, the quality of manpower and the technology facilitation that can be done in places like Biopolis is huge advantage for Singapore, which could be used to collaborate with those two emerging but very large economies.” Maha Guruswamy Senior Director JAPAC at Sciex However,  these  markets  have  different  needs  and   challenges:  for  instance,  limited  healthcare  infrastructure,   personnel  and  equipment.  As  governments  seek  to  expand   access  with  limited  budgets  and  infrastructure,  and  paDents'   out-­‐of-­‐pocket  costs  remain  high,  value  products  and  services   have  posted  strong  growth.  There  is  strong  demand  in  these   markets  for  compeDDve  pricing,  ease  of  use  and  good-­‐ enough  (not  the  best)  quality  and  specificaDons.   How  can  Singapore's  bioscience  sector  address  regional   problems,  given  its  very  different  size,  affluence  and   infrastructure?  Skilled  talent  ajracted  from  around  the   region,  as  well  as  collaboraDon  with  R&D  centres  in   emerging  markets,  can  help  idenDfy  unmet  needs  and   opportuniDes.  Singapore's  superior  infrastructure  and  skilled   talent  can  help  develop  soluDons  quickly,  and  again  draw  on   regional  talent  and  knowledge  to  coordinate  producDon,   distribuDon  and  access  to  regional  markets.     Virtually all the growth in Asia-Pacific healthcare expenditure will come from emerging markets 0 500 1,000 1,500 2,000 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 Thailand Taiwan South Korea Singapore Philippines Pakistan New Zealand Malaysia Japan Indonesia India Hong Kong China Australia USD billion
  9. 9. Focus areas for investment Maximise relevance and return To  maximise  relevance  and  return  on   investment,  elements  of  the  bioscience  sector   should  clearly  arDculate  and  follow  strategic   focus  areas.  Given  local  and  regional  needs   and  capabiliDes  developed  thus  far,  there  are   three  approaches  for  prioriDsaDon:   Align  with  local  disease  burden:  Converge   A*Star,  university  and  hospital  research  on   strategic  health  challenges:  the  biggest   contributors  to  the  burden  of  disease  in   Singapore.  These  are  relevant  for  other   developed  markets  and  also  increasingly   emerging  regional  markets  with  ageing   populaDons  and  growing  affluence.   Precision  medicine  for  Asian  phenotypes:   Leverage  on  locaDon  to  focus  on  specific   diseases  with  Asian  disDncDveness,  whether   presentaDon,  pathology,  genomic  make  up,   response  to  treatment,  or  the  propensity  to   adverse  drug  reacDons.  Singapore's  small  size   and  integrated  health  system  make  it  a  good   test  hub  for  new  health  technologies  and   innovaDons  in  the  conDnuum  of  care.  For   instance,  a  centralised  populaDon  genomic   database  and  regulatory  framework  for  data   privacy  and  security,  in  addiDon  to  electronic   health  records,  can  facilitate  cost-­‐effecDve   research  and  analyDcs  for  personalised   therapies  for  the  local  populaDon,  with   extrapolaDon  potenDal  to  other  markets.   Create  value  through  complex  producDon:   How  can  Singapore  stay  compeDDve  as  a   manufacturing  locaDon,  despite  rising  costs   here  as  well  as  growing  sophisDcaDon  of   regional  alternaDves  like  China?  By  selecDng   complex  manufacturing  projects  that  need   skilled  talent  and  cu^ng-­‐edge  technology,   such  as  biologics.  Singapore  should  conDnue  to   invest  in  next-­‐generaDon  plaxorms  to  help   bioscience  companies  make  dramaDc   improvements  to  producDvity  and  costs.   Government  collaboraDon  and  risk-­‐sharing  will   help  ajract  such  investment,  besides   availability  of  talent  to  facilitate  expansion  to   regional  markets.   The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   9   Disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) quantify premature mortality (years of life lost, YLLs) & disability (years lived with disability, YLDs) Source: Ministry of Health, Singapore burden of disease study 2010 7.7% 14.0% 14.2% 19.9% 18.9% Respiratory infections Neurological Diabetes Heart disease Cancer Burden of disease: Singapore % of Disability-Adjusted Life Years (DALYs) “Singapore is in a unique situation because the population is small but concentrated and there is good integration between the health system and government bodies. I believe it's easier for Singapore to put in place a [genomic] database and start to explore what the information means for patients here and then extrapolate to other countries. I don't see Singapore's size as a barrier but an opportunity: the size makes such a project easily manageable.” Elena Rizova ‎Vice President External Innovation Asia Pacific at Johnson & Johnson “We have Amgen, who have launched their factory of the future in Singapore. This is a complete single-use facility, and it took 1/4 of the cost to build and 1/4 of the land space as opposed to a traditional biotech facility. I think there is a lot of opportunity for us to invest and advance the technology, and that's how we can differentiate and promote Singapore.” Kevin Lai ‎Executive Director Biomedical Sciences and Consumer Businesses, EDB 1 2 3
  10. 10. Accelerating commercialisation Range of routes to market The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   10   Looking  back  at  the  past  fioeen  years  of  bioscience  development,  Singapore’s  strengths  in  basic  and   translaDonal  research  capabiliDes  have  yet  to  translate  into  substanDal  commercial  success.     Commercialisation outcomes Singapore Comparison with: Israel # IPs licensed 238 (2010–2014) 259 (2012–2013) # Spin-offs 29 (till 2013) 72 (2012–2013) Data sources A*STAR Israel Advanced Technology Industries “The commercialisation journey takes a while, but we are starting to see some outcomes happening in the Singapore’s biomedical space. For example, we have had half a dozen biomedical start-ups from A*STAR annually in recent years and several others from the universities as well. More importantly, Singapore-based companies and academia have developed a strong pipeline of drug candidates and several have successfully advanced into clinical testing both here and overseas.” Jonathan Kua ‎Director, Industry Development Group, A*STAR “Singapore has the scientific capabilities, clinical infrastructure and some exciting IP in A*Star, Duke-NUS and other institutions. The challenge is in translating clinical ideas into commercial success; we have few examples of such success. Singapore has attracted scientists but not a great deal of entrepreneurial and commercial experience in getting drugs to patients: big pharma and biotech experience with a blend of R&D, commercial and investor perspectives. This is what we are now trying to change.” Carl Firth ‎CEO, Aslan Pharmaceuticals To  speed  up  commercialisaDon,  it  is  vital  for  bioscience  segments  to  pursue  viable  channels  to  market;   entrepreneurship  comprises  just  one  of  several  opDons.     Licensing Spin-offsCollaboration Start-ups From an institute perspective, industry engagement may span collaborative research funded by a private unit (e.g. MNC R&D) at a public institute or university, to licensing of IP in return for royalties Spin-offs are created, financed and managed by universities; start-ups have external investors and management plus often in-licensed technology
  11. 11. Accelerating commercialisation Range of routes to market The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   11   Boost  engagement  with  industry   Why  collaborate?  The  R&D  costs  for  medical  devices  and  drugs  are  soaring,  with  >US$1.2B  spent   on  average  per  drug  approved,  according  to  QuinDles,  a  leading  contract  research  organisaDon.   Given  the  relaDvely  longer  ‘valley  of  death’  for  drug  and  medical  device  development,  as   compared  to  a  health  technology  or  services,  clinical  development  now  needs  large  reserves  of   private  capital  –  or  alternaDvely,  extensive  collaboraDon.  For  drug  discovery  in  parDcular,  a  viable   channel  to  market  is  through  established  big  pharma,  who  are  in  turn  shioing  decisively  towards   open  innovaDon  models  with  growing  reliance  on  R&D  partners  to  reduce  costs.   How  to  accelerate?  The  following  success  factors  are  vital  for  effecDve  collaboraDon,  to  generate   ideas  and  develop  products  with  bejer  commercial  potenDal.   Strong industry base Researchers open to collaboration Alignment of institutes and industry Attract and retain corporate innovation and venture funds, and early-stage R&D centres Boost industry and international exposure to familiarize researchers with cutting-edge science and enable them to speak industry language Facilitate validation; streamline intelligence and legal processes to accelerate collaboration and tech transfer to SMEs and large enterprises “Research institutes in Singapore generate some exciting intellectual property, and investigators are open to collaborating with industry. Streamlining tech transfer and licensing processes will speed up partnerships, and prevent companies’ interest from moving on to other locations and topics.” Brian Henry ‎Executive Director and Site Lead, Early Discovery Pharmacology and Exploratory Sciences at MSD Translational Medicine Research Centre “There is an increasing need for sophisticated technology and expertise to test novel therapies and devices: for instance, humanised and immunocompetent animal models to test immunotherapies; genomic biomarkers to support clinical trials, and the like. Public- funded research supports many of the activities that help validate such technologies, and bring them to a stage that would be relevant to companies.” Benjamin Seet, Executive Director of the Biomedical Research Council at the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) 1
  12. 12. Accelerating commercialisation Range of routes to market The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   12   Ajract  savvy  private  capital  to  grow  start-­‐ups  and  SMEs   “There is a real and immediate need in Singapore for an entrepreneur with a great health tech idea to be able to surround himself or herself with the right acceleration mechanisms and expertise in order to quickly succeed. Today, this 'acceleration' platform simply does not exist in Singapore, despite vehement agreement among key decision makers in Singapore that this should happen and this needs to be resolved sooner rather than later, otherwise Singapore will miss out contributing significantly to that ecosystem.” Julien de Salaberry Chief Innovation Officer at The Propell Group Short gestation time helps attract capital Health tech & services Device & diagnostics Pharmaceuticals Unlike  clusters  such  as  the  United  States  or   Israel,  Singapore  lacks  ready  access  to  an   investor  base  with  deep  biotech  knowledge  and   experience.  Local  investors  as  well  as  offices   established  by  internaDonal  venture  capital  are   ooen  generalists,  and  have  other  opDons  with   faster  return  or  lower  risk  than  biotech.   Singapore  also  lacks  a  NASDAQ-­‐style  bourse,  with   trade  sales  accounDng  for  the  majority  of  transacDons.   An  exchange  such  as  the  GreTai  SecuriDes  Market   (Taipei  Exchange)  in  Taiwan  could  provide  a  financing   opDon  for  domesDc  bioscience  companies  and  enable   a  vibrant  IPO  market  to  ajract  private  capital  from  a   range  of  investors:  retail,  venture  capital,  private   equity,  family  offices,  as  well  as  corporate  investors.   120 / 685 total Taiwan GTMS: Listed biotech companies, 2014 “I think it's very difficult for a company in Singapore to raise money after the initial government grant. In the US or Europe, there are VCs, corporate investors, business angels, family offices, patient organisations, philanthropy and grant funding – there is a whole range. In Singapore, I don't see an investor community, e.g. a business angel club or many corporate investors. As for bringing in investors from the outside, you need a local VC who can bring in American VCs. They need to have a lead investor who is a local, someone they can trust – it is too far away from the US or Europe to take a lead.” Patrik Frei Founder and CEO of Venture Valuation “Government grants such as LETAS are too generalised. Companies are eligible for government grants only if <5 years old, which is fine for a software company to go to market. But medical equipment technology development to final execution will take 8–10 years. Also some grants are on reimbursement basis, but young companies do not have resources to spend upfront.” Dr Margam Chandrasekaran, CEO & Chief Scientist at Bio-Scaffold International Finally,  there  is  room  for  effecDve  sector-­‐specific  incubators  and  accelerators  to  provide  shared   faciliDes  as  well  as  guidance  to  help  scale  up  bioscience  businesses.  Success  stories  will  help   spark  more  interest  in  commercialisaDon,  both  from  entrepreneurs  as  well  as  venture  capital.   Time to market & difficulty raising capital 2
  13. 13. Next-generation talent Commercial and convergence skills Ajract  senior  talent  with  the  mulD-­‐ funcDonal  experience  and  perspecDves.   Bring  in,  encourage  and  support  MNCs  with   internal  cross-­‐training,  to  expand  and   entrench  their  R&D  funcDons  in  Singapore   and  also  anchor  their  regional  headquarters   in  Singapore.  Besides  drawing  in   internaDonal  talent,  this  will  also  serve  to   develop  local  talent  who  are  likely  to  be   cross-­‐trained  as  opportuniDes  arise  when   they  advance  in  their  careers.  The  star   talent  brought  in  for  the  next  phase  should   combine  R&D  and  commercial   perspecDves.  Singapore  already  enjoys  a   reputaDon  for  the  best  quality  of  life  in   Asia;  sustain  and  enhance  stability,  vibrancy   and  ease  of  living  and  working  here  to   conDnue  to  ajract  global  talent  and  to   retain  the  best  and  brightest  locals.   Train  workforce  in  core  skills  to  support  and   capitalise  on  convergence  trends.     IdenDfy  areas  with  emerging  convergence,   and  steer  the  terDary  educaDon  system  to   equip  new  entrants  to  the  workforce  with   relevant  skill  sets.  For  example,  the  advent   of  big  data  and  its  growing  applicaDon  in   biosciences  presents  an  opportunity  for  a   next  wave  of  highly  skilled  jobs.  Singapore   can  capitalise  on  this  opportunity  by   creaDng  a  criDcal  mass  of  cross-­‐trained   talent,  such  as  scienDsts  who  understand   staDsDcs  and  computer  programming,  and   can  apply  those  skills  to  biosciences  R&D.   As  medicine  grows  increasingly  mulD-­‐ disciplinary,  cross-­‐trained  medical   specialists  will  add  to  the  pool  of  experts   able  to  spot  and  exploit  opportuniDes  to   develop  future  therapies  and  technologies.   The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   13   Human  capital  is  a  criDcal  component  to  realise  R&D,  manufacturing  and  commercialisaDon   strategies  for  the  next  phase.  The  bioscience  sector  being  a  heavily  knowledge-­‐based  industry,  the   availability  and  relevance  of  talent  is  essenDal  to  success.   Considering  talent  needs  for  the  next  phase,  there  is  a  stark  gap  surfacing  in  spaces  for  cross-­‐ funcDonal  talent,  where  tradiDonal  skill  sets  converge.  Bringing  bioscience  products  and  services   to  market  requires  a  range  of  capabiliDes  spanning  research,  development,  regulatory  and  market   access,  sales  and  markeDng,  financial  and  so  on.  MulD-­‐funcDonal  talent  with  relevant  experience   in  R&D  as  well  as  sales  and  markeDng  will  be  of  criDcal  importance  in  rapidly  commercializing  new   products  and  services.  This  convergence  of  a  deep  technical  background  with  strong  commercial   experience  is  a  skill  set  that  is  not  commonly  available  in  Singapore.  To  engineer  a  depth  of  such   talent,  the  bioscience  sector  should  uDlise  a  two-­‐pronged  talent  strategy.   “Singapore is still in the first cycle of entrepreneurship. There is plenty of excellent scientific expertise but a shallow experienced talent pool with the commercial and management skills to develop a product and bring it to market. There is a lack of people who can be CEOs, COOs, CFOs; what we have is scientists trying to start companies. They have had little exposure to business, especially the entrepreneurial side. These skills cannot be built overnight, so there is a need to attract the necessary talent.” Michel Birnbaum, Entrepreneur in Residence at NTUitive, Nanyang Technological University “Singapore should do more to grow its next generation of leaders. The government and industry can help to identify good people to groom for C-level positions. Then the industry should rotate the talent through meaningful assignments to build cross- functional skills: R&D, commercial, country assignments, sales experience and so forth. We must create opportunities to develop a pipeline of outstanding management talent.” Abel Ang, Chief Operating Officer at Accuron Technologies 1 2
  14. 14. Conclusion The next ten years Over  the  past  15  years,  Singapore  has  developed  into  a  renowned  bioscience  cluster  through   top-­‐down  investment  in  world-­‐class  infrastructure  and  skilled  talent  for  R&D  and  bio-­‐ manufacturing.  In  the  next  ten  years,  industry  should  take  the  lead  to  create  lasDng   commercial  success.   A  solid  base  of    biosciences  SMEs  is  key,  and  is  a  major  gap  to  be  filled.  Health  technology  and   services  companies  with  quicker  Dme  to  market  have  the  edge  in  terms  of  ajracDng   impaDent  capital.  Efficient  investment  should  span  a  balanced  porxolio  of  incremental  and   transformaDonal  ideas  across  medical  devices,  diagnosDcs,  pharma  and  biotech.  AjracDng   more  corporate  and  venture  funds  and  incubators  will  help  find,  fund  and  guide  ideas  with   commercial  potenDal.  More  public-­‐private  collaboraDon  will  increase  commercial  potenDal  of   R&D.   Build  the  right  talent,  and  more  capital  will  come.  Commercial  experience  is  the  biggest  gap  to   fill:  an  efficient  yet  effecDve  staff  to  manage  SMEs,  with  cross-­‐funcDonal  skills  across  R&D,   engineering,  quality  control,  regulatory,  market  access,  finance  and  sales  and  markeDng.  It  is   necessary  to  ajract  such  stars  from  across  the  globe,  and  also  vital  to  steadily  develop  the   local  talent  pool.  Beyond  building  a  top  layer  of  management  talent,  training  a  mid  layer  in   convergence  skills  can  bring  the  next  wave  of  skilled  and  well-­‐paying  jobs  to  Singapore.   Singapore's  limited  market  size  has  always  spurred  local  companies  to  expand  internaDonally,   usually  to    large  developed  markets  such  as  the  US  or  Europe.    By  focusing  our  R&D  efforts  to   address  the  differing  healthcare  needs  of  emerging  markets,  a  new  breed  of  entrepreneurs   can  harness  Singapore's  infrastructure  and  talent  to  meet  the  demands  in  ASEAN,  China  &   India.  This  will  open  up  a  wealth  of  new  opportuniDes.  Singapore  can  establish  itself  as  a   regional  hub  to  develop  technologies  &  innovaDons  to  access  these  new  markets.   The  next  phase  of  development  presents  new  challenges  and  opportuniDes  for  Singapore,  as   healthcare  markets  undergo  transformaDonal  shios  on  a  global  scale.  As  we  look  ahead  to   2025,  the  bioscience  sector  should  consider  how  best  to  create  success  stories  that  inspire   more  biosciences  companies  to  establish  &  grow  in  Singapore.   The  Next  Lap:  Biosciences  in  Singapore  2025   14  
  15. 15. About BioSingapore Clearstate  (,  a  business  of  the  Economist  Intelligence  Unit,  is  a  research   consultancy  specialising  in  the  domains  of  healthcare  and  life  sciences,  advising  on  growth   strategies  in  emerging  economies.   Clearstate  is  the  go-­‐to  research  consulDng  partner  for  clients  seeking  greenfield  growth   opportuniDes  in  fast-­‐expanding  emerging  economies.  By  leveraging  The  Economist   Intelligence  Unit’s  depth  of  country  experDse,  we  offer  visibility  and  credible  forecasts  on  the   direcDon  of  emerging  economies’  opaque  healthcare  environments.   We  have  a  strong  reputaDon  among  our  clients  for  our  depth  of  industry  knowledge,  our   collaboraDve  approach  and  our  innovaDve  soluDons.  We  are  recognised  for  consistently   listening  and  working  in  partnership  with  our  clients  to  deliver  comprehensive  and  granular   answers  that  go  beyond  the  obvious.     About the authors Wilson  Tan  is  Director,  Strategy  &  New  SoluDons  at  Clearstate.  He  has  more  than  12  years  of   consulDng  experience  within  healthcare  in  Asia-­‐Pacific  and  emerging  markets,  across  medical   technology,  pharmaceuDcal,  life  sciences  and  healthcare  services  sectors   Kavitha  Hariharan  is  a  Principal  Consultant  at  Clearstate.  She  has  over  9  years  of  experience  in   market  intelligence  and  strategic  advisory  to  mulDnaDonal,  SME  and  government  clients  in   medical  devices,  pharmaceuDcal  and  healthcare  services  sectors.   This  white  paper  drew  on  research  support  provided  by  Hantao  Liang,  an  Analyst  at  Clearstate.   While  every  effort  has  been  taken  to  verify  the  accuracy  of  this  informaDon,  Clearstate  (Pte)  Ltd  and  the  Economist   Intelligence  Unit  Ltd.  cannot  accept  any  responsibility  or  liability  for  reliance  by  any  person  on  this  report  or  any  of  the   informaDon,  opinions  or  conclusions  set  out  in  this  report.   Copyright  ©  2015  Clearstate  (Pte)  Ltd.  All  rights  reserved.   For  enquiries,  please  email     About Clearstate BioSingapore  is  a  premier  and  established  life  sciences  associaDon  operaDng  in  Singapore  and  the   ASEAN  region  since  2004.     Our  vision  is  to  enable  a  successful  and  vibrant  life  sciences  community  in  Singapore  by  connecDng   industry  to  soluDons.     BioSingapore  is  a  unique  industry  plaxorm  for  dialogue,  interacDon,  research,  debate,  advocacy  and   knowledge  exchange.  We  run  networking  sessions,  interacDve  lectures,  industry  focus  groups,   dinners,  execuDve  and  entrepreneur  briefings  and  other  events,  alone  or  in  collaboraDon  with  our   network  of  partners.     Please  see  our  website  to  join  as  a  member  -­‐  www.biosingapore-­‐