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business of life sciences

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Core industry grew faster in SC than any Southeastern state from 2017 – 2020, at double region’s rat see more

    On the heels of the proclamation by Governor Henry McMaster that  he was recognizing February 21-25 as SC Life Sciences Week in recognition of the importance of the industry to South Carolina, researchers from the Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina have determined that the industry is not only South Carolina’s fastest-growing overall – it is growing at a faster rate than its peers across the Southeast.

    Since 2010, annual employment growth within the life science industry core has averaged approximately 2.7 percent, far exceeding that of the state as a whole over the same time period (1.4%). More recently, although South Carolina’s overall employment growth experienced a slight decrease since 2017 due to the pandemic-induced recession of 2020 (-0.4%), the life science industry core experienced remarkably high growth of 26.4 percent over the same period according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data – and an even higher rate of 42.2% using proprietary South Carolina data.

    These growth rates are unparalleled in the region, researchers noted. The life science industry core grew faster in South Carolina than in any other Southeastern state between 2017 and 2020 and at approximately twice the rate of the Southeastern region as a whole. South Carolina’s life science industry core currently ranks 5th among all Southeastern states in total size, behind Florida, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia.

    The research went on to document that the annual economic impact of the life science industry on the state of South Carolina totals a robust $25.7 billion. This figure reflects the dollar value of all goods and services that can be attributed (either directly or indirectly) to life science-related firms in South Carolina. This $25.7 billion in economic output is associated with 87,773 total jobs and over $5.6 billion in labor income – and a sizable jump from the $11.4 billion impact in a late 2016 study.

    The economic impact resulting from the life science industry is associated with an employment multiplier of 2.9, which implies that for every 10 jobs that are created within the life science industry in South Carolina, an additional 19 jobs are created elsewhere in the state. This multiplier effect is substantially higher than that of the average South Carolina industry multiplier, which is 1.7.

    The life science industry in South Carolina currently consists of approximately 30,731 employees across 1,033 firms. Employment is most concentrated within firms specializing in medical devices & equipment manufacturing and bioscience-related distribution. When the indirect and induced impact of the industry is considered, the life sciences industry here accounts for a staggering 87,773 jobs, researchers note.

    Better still, the average direct job in the life science industry in South Carolina pays an annual total wage of $87,639, which represents a 79 percent premium over the average annual wage in South Carolina across all jobs ($48,942). And the industry supports a significant demand for high-wage, high-skilled jobs in various STEM fields (science, engineering, technology, mathematics, and related occupations). Approximately 26 percent of the life science industry statewide is driven by high-tech R&D, with another 33 percent in production-related activities, and the remaining 41 percent providing transportation and other support services.

    Even the growth of the firm count is extraordinary, having grown from 402 firms counted in the Palmetto State in the 2016 study to 1,033 firms today in the rapidly expanding ecosystem. And life sciences impact the entire state, with a current presence of industry organizations in 42 of 46 state counties.

    The research, led by Research Economist Joseph Von Nessen, further noted that industries grow over time, and those able to maximize the economic impact of their growth and add the most value to their local regions are typically those that focus on expanding their R&D subsectors. This bodes well for South Carolina life sciences because the high-tech R&D subsector is projected to be the fastest growing segment of life sciences over the next decade. This total anticipated growth rate of 18.4 percent exceeds projections for the broader life sciences sector and reveal significant potential for South Carolina life sciences – namely, the ability to capitalize on the projected economic growth trends that already signal strong demand for R&D.

    The findings were presented as hundreds of life science executives from 27 states and six countries assembled in Charleston, SC for SCBIO 2022: The Life Sciences Conference of South Carolina. Among more than 35 featured presenters at the conference were BIO’s global CEO Dr. Michelle McMurry-Heath, Clemson University President Jim Clements, PhRMA executive Courtney Christian, Nephron Pharmaceuticals CEO Lou Kennedy, and SC Commerce Secretary Harry Lightsey III.  SCBIO President and CEO James Chappell delivered a State of the Industry review and outlook as well.

    Life sciences today represents a key economic development focus for the state, with strong life science recruiting initiatives led by the South Carolina Department of Commerce and other regional economic development teams. Governor McMaster issued an Executive Order in April 2021 for the state to make life sciences a strategic focus for South Carolina in its recruiting and economic development priorities.

    “Life sciences is a major driver of South Carolina’s economy today, and this conference is testament to the industry’s surging impact, reach and rapidly rising economic significance in our state and country,” noted SCBIO President and CEO James Chappell. “We’re honored by Governor McMaster’s personal support for the contributions that life sciences are making to improve quality of life, care and economic standing for South Carolina citizens.”

    For additional information on SCBIO, visit www.SCBIO.org.

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Download and review your complimentary copy of the 2021 SCBIO annual report now. see more

    The Board and staff of SCBIO have issued their 2021 Annual Report in advance of the organization hosting SCBIO 2022: The Life Sciences Conference of South Carolina, which begins this week.

    More than 500 live and virtual attendees will participate in the record-setting conference, which features more than 35 speakers, major economic development announcements, hundreds of partnering sessions and more.

    The annual report contains key statistical updates on the growth of the life sciences industry, its economic impact on the state, major milestones of the past 12 months, trends and much more.  Download your complimentary copy here.

  • sam patrick posted an article
    New HQ set for life science consultancy see more

    EverGlade Consulting has opened an office location in Charleston, South Carolina as part of its expansion into the Southeast, formalizing its headquarter's location.

    EverGlade recently announced the appointment of Charleston resident Andrew Stiles as Principal in the group and will use this new location as a means of recruiting local talent and new clients into the firm. The company currently works with a variety of life sciences and defense companies in the Southeast and plans to use its new Charleston location to further expand into this important region.

    "While EverGlade has its roots in Washington, D.C. as a virtual company, Charleston is home," commented Daniel Paterson, Chief Operating Officer and Charleston resident. "The industrial base matches the profile of companies we are hoping to attract. New and fast-growing companies in the life sciences, defense, and technology sectors are choosing the Southeast and cities like Charleston. As such, we felt we needed a physical presence to grow our business alongside these exciting companies and truly have boots-on-ground where the novel technology and ideas are being developed."

    "Since 2017 South Carolina is a clear leader in the growth of life sciences in the Southeast, and the addition of professional service firms like EverGlade to our state's ecosystem is key in continuing to support the sector and its growth," noted SCBIO CEO James Chappell.

    EverGlade expects to officially open the office on April 4. The company plans to recruit for positions in regulatory affairs, quality assurance, program management, project management, and government contract administration and compliance as part of its Southeast expansion plan.

    EverGlade Consulting is a consulting firm with employees across the country, that helps clients navigate the federal landscape. We are inspired by technology-driven companies whose focus is to secure non-dilutive funding from the federal government. We offer services ranging from opportunity identification and proposal support through post-award contract management and compliance with federal regulations at agencies including ASPR, BARDA, NIH, CDC, DHS, FEMA, JPEO, DTRA, DLA, and DARPA.

    For additional information about EverGlade Consulting, visit: https://www.EverGlade.com.

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Business is booming across South Carolina... and the future is bright. see more

    Compliments of Greenville Business, Charleston Business and Columbia Business magazines

    John Wall authored an article highlighting the positive economic development outlook for South Carolina, which was published in the March 2022 issues of Integrated Media Publishing’s three monthly business publications: Charleston Business, Columbia Business Monthly, and Greenville Business Magazine.

    “The future is bright for South Carolina, her people, and the economy,” Wall said before detailing how the state’s economic foundation has primed the business landscape for sustained success in many areas.

    South Carolina’s massive port activity has positioned the state for growth in several industries thanks to its global connections and international trade routes. In addition to the environmentally driven sectors like timber companies and agribusiness, the Palmetto State has reinvented itself for the modern business environment with success in the evolving textile industry, as well as manufacturing and life sciences sectors.

    Wall noted that the recipe for sustained success extends beyond the foundational advantage already in place and into the effective leadership in place to continue moving the state into the future. “We have amazing industry-specific organizations, such as the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance, which has worked tirelessly for over a century to advance manufacturing and the business community,” he said. “Newer organizations like the South Carolina Boating & Fishing Alliance have made major waves in promoting the burgeoning boating and fishing industry in South Carolina.”

    Additionally, Wall noted the importance of state agencies like the South Carolina Department of Commerce that do a great job in supporting existing businesses and recruiting new ones to the state, especially with effective leadership from the Department’s new Secretary, Harry Lightsey.

    For the full article, please click here.

  • sam patrick posted an article
    South Carolina's fastest-growing industry stars in new SCBIZ Magazine features see more

    The story on life sciences in South Carolina just took a big step forward to becoming even better known as SCBIZ Magazine featured the booming industry as its Summer 2021 cover story -- out now.

    The 14-page feature spanned four stories, from the trends driving the rapid growth of life sciences in South Carolina, to major advances in life science research happening here at home. A fabulous story on how SCBIO and life sciences organizations are working to close the workforce gap is also included, as well as an industry salute for our role in helping America emerge from COVID.  It's a tremendous section.

    Over 20 organizations are featured in stories, and nearly as many industry leaders from across SC are quoted in articles, enriched with photos, industry data on segments and market penetration, and more.

    More than two years in the making by the SCBIO team who worked with SCBIZ to bring this first-ever magazine feature on the industry to life, SCBIZ intends to build on this year's momentum and do another life sciences feature next Summer.  READ THE ENTIRE SECTION HERE!

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Hundreds of nation’s industry leaders to gather for strategic partnership development, insights see more

    With the biggest story of 2021 – the global COVID-19 pandemic – serving as a backdrop, the largest life sciences conference in Palmetto State history will convene both in-person and virtually February 22-24 to address how South Carolina and America are accepting the challenge of  achieving health and prosperity for all, South Carolina life sciences industry officials have announced.

    Themed “Challenge Accepted,” the 2-day SCBIO 2022 event will feature national speaker sessions on Transformational Technologies, Next Generation Patient Care, Ensuring Opportunity for All, and Embracing Collaboration & Innovation – fundamental forces driving the state’s fastest growing industry: life sciences.

    Currently listed as a $12 billion industry, national economist Dr. Joseph Von Nessen of University of South Carolina’s Moore School of Business will report findings of a just-completed economic impact study of the state’s life sciences cluster, last analyzed in 2017.

    FDA Associate Director of the CDER Drug Shortage Staff Valerie Jensen is the first announced featured major speaker for the 2-day conference, addressing the gathering in a Program “Challenge Accepted:  Delivering Next Generation Care to Patients Now.”  A trained clinical pharmacist, Captain Jensen was one of the initial developers of FDA’s Drug Shortage Program and was named Associate Director in 2012. She continues to manage the Drug Shortage Staff at FDA. Joined by MUSC Health CEO Dr. Pat Cawley, Velocity Clinical Research executive Steve Clemons, and USC Provost Dr. Stephen Cutler, the panel will focus on the industry’s success in to expediting development of medicine, devices, technologies and vaccines in record time and with startling efficacy – and what it means for care around the world going forward.

    Captain Jensen will be joined by more than 25 additional presenters and honorees at SCBIO 2022, which brings together leaders and executives from life science organizations across the nation to South Carolina. In deference to the pandemic, FDA protocols on safety are being rigorously adhered to and events are also being presented and distributed virtually, organizers revealed.

    The conference will feature a significantly expanded exhibit hall showcasing scores of life sciences industry businesses, institutions of higher learning and essential support industry partners from across America, as well as presentation of the prestigious Pinnacle Awards by South Carolina Life Sciences to the outstanding 2021 Organization of the Year and Individual of the Year. Also to be honored with Pinnacle Awards will be an inductee into the SC Life Sciences Hall of Fame, and an award for an industry Rising Star under 40 years of age.  

    New SCBIO CEO James Chappell will deliver a highly anticipated “State of South Carolina’s Life Sciences Industry” address, while hundreds of in-person and virtual attendees will take advantage of meetings and connection sessions through the conference’s Partnering Portal. Additional speakers will be announced shortly, as well as posted online.

    Registration to attend the 2-day conference is now open online.  For more details, visit the 2022 Annual Conference section at www.scbio.org. Registration and exhibiting are free to many SCBIO investors. Early bird general admission pricing provides significant discounts to interested companies, industry supporters, students interested in life sciences, faculty and teachers. Limited Exhibit  space and sponsorships are also available by inquiring at info@scbio.org.

    The 2-day conference annually draws attendees from across America for networking, innovation updates, opportunity discovery, partnership making and strategic discussion. Already committed attendees include officials across a broad spectrum of life sciences industries including medical devices, bio manufacturing, drug discovery, R&D, pharmaceuticals, diagnostics and testing, digital health and health IT, bio-ag and more.

    SCBIO is South Carolina’s investor-driven economic development organization exclusively focused on building, advancing, and growing the life sciences industry in the state. The industry has more than 700 firms directly involved and over 43,000 professionals employed directly or indirectly in the research, development and commercialization of innovative healthcare, medical device, industrial, environmental, and agricultural biotechnology products.  In early 2021, Governor Henry McMaster issued an Executive Order making it a state priority to continue to grow and expand the life sciences industry in the Palmetto State.

    “Life sciences is a major driver of South Carolina’s economy, and this conference’s growth is testament to the industry’s surging impact, reach and rapidly rising economic significance in our state and region,” noted SCBIO President and CEO James Chappell. “Already accounting for thousands of highly-skilled jobs in the Palmetto State, this sector has tremendous growth potential, and we’re excited to showcase top companies, research universities and leaders from across our state and country at SCBIO 2022.” 

    Among leading biotech and med-tech industry brands participating in the conference are Nephron Pharmaceuticals, BIO, Johnson & Johnson, AVX, PhRMA, Medpoint, AdvaMed, Poly-Med, VWR, Rhythmlink, SoftBox Systems, ZEUS, Patheon Thermo Fisher, Zverse, Abbott, Alcami and more. All of South Carolina’s research universities – MUSC, Clemson and the University of South Carolina – are represented, as are major healthcare systems, and economic development entities including the South Carolina Department of Commerce, SCRA, South Carolina Hospital Association and others.

    As the official state affiliate of BIO, PhRMA and AdvaMed, SCBIO members include academic institutions, biotech companies, entrepreneurial organizations, service providers, thought leaders, economic development organizations and related groups whose members are leading the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products that transform how we heal, fuel and feed the world.

    For additional information on SCBIO or to register for SCBIO 2021, visit www.SCBIO.org.

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Transaction expected to close in the first quarter of 2022 see more

    Novo Holdings A/S (“Novo Holdings”) has announced that it has agreed to acquire Ritedose from AGIC Capital and Humanwell.

    Founded in 1995 and headquartered in Columbia, S.C., The Ritedose Corporation (“Ritedose”) is a leading sterile pharmaceutical manufacturer, specialising in the use of blow-fill-seal (BFS) technology. Ritedose provides outsourced development and manufacturing of ophthalmology drugs, respiratory drugs, and vaccines. In addition, Ritedose develops and markets its own portfolio of generic drugs and is an emerging player in the outsourced sterile compounding market focusing on medically necessary drugs that are in short supply. Ritedose customers range from small start-ups and large pharmaceutical companies to wholesalers, retail pharmacies and hospital systems. Today, the company employs more than 400 people and is led by Chief Executive Officer Jody Chastain, who will continue to run the company under Novo Holdings’ ownership.

    Jonathan Levy, Senior Partner, Principal Investments at Novo Holdings, said: “Ritedose is a mission-driven company helping bring life-saving drugs to market with the highest focus on quality and sterility. We look forward to partnering with Jody and the Ritedose team as they continue to deliver best-in-class quality solutions to the biopharmaceutical industry.”

    Abhijeet Lele, Senior Partner and Head of Principal Investments US at Novo Holdings, added: “The investment in Ritedose is perfectly aligned with our deep expertise in pharma services. We see myriad opportunities to have an impact at Ritedose. We are also particularly excited to be at the vanguard of increasing vaccine availability through the use of blow-fill-seal injectable technology.”

    Jody Chastain, Chief Executive Officer of Ritedose, said: “We are excited and proud to be partnering with Novo Holdings. We believe that Novo Holdings’ experience and track record in healthcare and their commitment to supporting scientific, humanitarian, and social causes aligns well with our mission and will help us to deliver on our growth aspirations. Our focus has always been on honouring patients and the people who care for them, and we look forward to continuing to do so with Novo Holdings’ support.”

    Heiko von Dewitz, Partner and Managing Director of AGIC in Europe, said: “We are pleased to have accompanied and supported Ritedose through an extraordinary journey, and worked closely with management to keep expanding Ritedose’s core business and develop new businesses that will fuel additional growth in the future. We believe Novo Holdings is a very good partner for Ritedose and that they will achieve great success together.”

    The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2022. Goodwin Procter, LLP served as legal advisor to Novo Holdings. RBC Capital Markets, LLC served as financial advisor to Novo Holdings.

    About Ritedose
    Founded in 1995 in Columbia, South Carolina, The Ritedose Corporation is an industry leader in the aseptic manufacturing and liquid packaging of respiratory and ophthalmic products, utilizing proven blow-fill-seal (“BFS”) technology to ensure efficient, consistent and safe dosage delivery. The company’s 25-year track record includes the delivery of more than 8 billion doses since 2012 without a single recall, and its current capacity is over 2.0 billion units annually. In 2020, The Ritedose Corporation was selected as a subcontractor to ApiJect for the production of single-dose prefilled syringes intended for administering COVID-19 vaccines.

    About Novo Holdings A/S
    Novo Holdings A/S is a private limited liability company wholly owned by the Novo Nordisk Foundation. It is the holding company of the Novo Group, comprising Novo Nordisk A/S and Novozymes A/S, and is responsible for managing the Novo Nordisk Foundation’s assets.

    Novo Holdings is recognized as a leading international life science investor, with a focus on creating long-term value. As a life science investor, Novo Holdings provides seed and venture capital to development-stage companies and takes significant ownership positions in growth and well-established companies. Novo Holdings also manages a broad portfolio of diversified financial assets. Further information: www.novoholdings.dk.

    About the Novo Nordisk Foundation
    The Novo Nordisk Foundation is an independent Danish foundation with corporate interests. It has two objectives: 1) to provide a stable basis for the commercial and research activities of the companies in the Novo Group; and 2) to support scientific, humanitarian and social causes.

    The vision of the Foundation is to contribute significantly to research and development that improves the lives of people and the sustainability of society. Since 2010, the Foundation has donated more than DKK 30 billion (US$4.5 billion), primarily for research at public institutions and hospitals in Denmark and the other Nordic countries. Read more at www.novonordiskfonden.dk/en

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Nephron Pharmaceuticals continues on rapid growth curve... see more

    Compliments of the Post and Courier

    Nephron Pharmaceuticals’ expansion is progressing as production gets underway on a spate of new business ventures — from at-home COVID-19 test kits to chemotherapy drugs.

    Since 2020, the West Columbia drug maker has invested $215 million to build out its campus in Lexington County’s Saxe Gotha Industrial Park. In the past month, the company hired 1,500 new part-time workers as it ramps up production of new product lines, CEO Lou Kennedy said, bringing it to 1,200 full-time employees and 2,500 part-timers.

    The hiring spree comes as Nephron produced 30 million doses of reagent for Abbott Laboratories’ at-home COVID-19 test kits last month and assembled about 1 million kits. Kennedy hopes to increase kit production to 2 million per month in January as demand for them has skyrocketed amid new variants of the deadly virus. 

    CONTINUE READING FULL STORY HERE...

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Goal to be partner of choice for cold chain delivery of high value, temperature sensitive products see more

    CSafe Global, the leader in temperature-controlled container solutions for the pharmaceutical industry, announced today that it has acquired Softbox Systems, a provider of passive temperature-controlled packaging solutions for the pharmaceutical, life science and cold chain logistics industries, significantly enhancing CSafe’s passive product portfolio. Together, they will provide the most comprehensive suite of thermal shipping solutions and become a one-stop-shop for all pharmaceutical cold chain shipping needs, enabling delivery of critical temperature-sensitive products, including next generation biologics, cell and gene therapy, and mRNA therapies such as the COVID-19 vaccine.

    The combined company, which will operate globally under the CSafe brand, will be the only cold chain platform with an end-to-end active air cargo and passive temperature-controlled packaging business spanning the complete spectrum of cold chain shipping solutions for the pharmaceutical and life sciences industries. Softbox’s well-regarded brands in the passive container space, such as SilverSkin, Silverpod and Tempcell, complement CSafe’s leading active product portfolio, particularly within air cargo. The acquisition will unlock opportunities for innovation as well as enhance CSafe’s sustainable and eco-friendly offerings, with new reusable and recyclable pallet and parcel solutions.

    Around the globe, a large industry pipeline of life-saving pharmaceutical therapies with strict temperature profiles is accelerating the need for reliable, temperature-controlled shipping solutions. Moreover, future pharmaceutical advances will require a new generation of qualified fit-for-purpose packaging, along with sophisticated tracking technology, that also helps customers meet their sustainability and recycling goals.

    “Through this combination, we will be the partner of choice for cold chain delivery of high value, temperature sensitive pharmaceutical therapies. Both CSafe and Softbox have proven to be reliable partners for customers seeking a secure way to deliver their life-enhancing products around the world,” said Patrick Schafer, CSafe CEO. “We’re thrilled to now offer our customers a platform that provides everything from the highest quality packaging to AI-enabled thermal and kinetic monitoring and logistics management.”

    “Our businesses are each rooted in a commitment to excellent customer service and high product quality, which made this combination a natural fit,” said Kevin Valentine, CEO of Softbox. “Together we will proudly continue to partner with our global Pharmaceutical customers to devise and deliver the best solutions for their evolving cold chain shipping needs, supporting the delivery of temperature sensitive lifesaving medicines and vaccines.

    “With the addition of Softbox’s product portfolio, CSafe strengthens its global infrastructure across air and ground while expanding its offerings for parcel delivery, all supported by the most advanced technology infrastructure,” said Todd Abbrecht, Co-CEO of Thomas H. Lee Partners, which first invested in CSafe in 2016. “We see an incredible opportunity for the combined company to serve as the international partner of choice for cold chain shipping solutions and remain on the forefront of innovation in the industry.”

    “The acquisition of Softbox advances CSafe’s strategy to be the leading cold chain solutions provider with a full suite of products and services to meet the needs of its pharmaceutical customers around the globe,” said Ben Magnano, Co-Managing Partner of Frazier Healthcare Partners. “CSafe is an excellent platform to build upon and we, alongside our partners at THL, will continue to make investments to further strengthen the Company’s leadership position in pharmaceutical cold chain.”

    As part of the acquisition, Softbox CEO Kevin Valentine will assume the role of president of CSafe’s Passive Temperature Controlled Packaging Division.

    Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Experts from Clemson, Rymedi, Diversified Medical and SCBIO address SC Manufacturing Conference see more

    Compliments of GSA Business Report

    Before leaving his post at Louisiana Economic Development, South Carolina native James Chappell was a skeptic.

    “Every state thinks they are going to succeed in life sciences,” Chappell said, unsure whether the Palmetto State has what it takes. “I started kind of doing my research, and I was blown away with all the things that have happened in South Carolina since I left, specifically in the life sciences industry. I was even more blown away by the last few days here and meeting a lot of people on this stage and the companies that have had unbelievable success, some in just a couple of years. I knew I made the right decision.”

    The new SCBIO chief gestured to other life science leaders from around the state on the stage with him Thursday at the S.C. Manufacturing Conference and Expo: Rymedi’s David Stefanich, Clemson University’s Cynthia Young and Diversified Medical Healthcare’s Austin Shirley.

    “Do you remember when BMW came to South Carolina? Do you remember before Boeing?” Chappell asked. “That’s what’s happening now, but it’s in the life sciences. Let’s look at that trend. If we keep doing the job that we should be doing, we can look back in 10 or 20 years, and the way people think about those manufacturers, they’ll think about the life sciences.”

    Read the full story here.

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Goal to “take South Carolina life sciences to an entirely new level” see more

    Following a nationwide search that targeted 200 candidates in 39 states and resulted in 116 total applications from across the country, the Board of Directors of SCBIO has named James Chappell, an executive with Louisiana Economic Development, as the organization’s new President and Chief Executive Officer.

    Dr. Chappell, whose career also includes time with Chartic Management Consulting in Boston, joined Louisiana Economic Development (LED) in 2013 and held positions of increasing responsibility at the organization including Executive Director of State Economic Competitiveness before being named Executive Director of Competitiveness and Entrepreneurship for the organization in 2021.

    During his tenure at LED, Dr. Chappell’s numerous successes included designing and implementing the state’s $100 million venture capital and small business funds, developing strategies to recruit globally recognized companies to the state , and joining the Louisiana MediFund board to develop strategies to increase the biosciences and healthcare industries in Louisiana. He also collaborated with bioscience and technology advocates to improve incentives to promote growth in the bioscience and technology industries.

    Dr Chappell earned his B.S. and M.S. in Plant Environmental Sciences from Clemson University, his Ph.D. from Louisiana State University, and a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Stem Cell Biology focusing on cancer and diabetes from Harvard Medical School. A three-year varsity football letterman while at Clemson, he is married with two children. He will begin his new role with SCBIO starting November 8, 2021.

    “SCBIO and South Carolina life sciences are excited to welcome James to lead this dynamic and forward-looking industry organization, and to help our hundreds of life sciences companies and thousands of employees and innovators take it to an entirely new level,” said Lou Kennedy, Board Chair of SCBIO and founder and CEO of Nephron Pharmaceuticals, and a member of the search committee. “Competition for the position was extremely strong but we unanimously felt that his credentials in both life sciences and economic development were the precise mix we sought as we continue to build, advance and grow the industry in South Carolina.”

    Life sciences has a $12 billion economic impact in the Palmetto State, with more than 700 firms involved and over 43,000 professionals employed in the research, development and commercialization of innovative healthcare, medical device, industrial, environmental, and agricultural biotechnology products. It also represents a significant economic development focus for the state, led by the South Carolina Department of Commerce and other regional economic development teams.

    South Carolina life sciences has seen a near-doubling of firms and 40% increase in life sciences’ direct employment since 2017, which combine to make it the fastest growing industry sector in the state, according to data provided by Dr. Joseph Von Nessen, state research economist and noted economic development expert with the Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina.

    “As a South Carolina native, I am thrilled to join SCBIO and return home.  South Carolina has become an emerging leader in life sciences, and I am excited to continue SCBIO’s great work in helping to grow the life sciences industry,” noted Dr. Chappell. 

    Ms. Kennedy went on to thank SCBIO Interim CEO Erin Ford for her critical contributions in leading the organization during the search process, which began in May with the resignation of prior CEO Sam Konduros.

    “Erin continued to do a strong and stellar job in leading the organization, charting the path, and maintaining the momentum without missing a beat during this national search, and our board and membership are grateful to her. The entire board and SCBIO membership are excited that she will remain a key part of the organization in her prior role of Executive Vice President and COO to add a steady and experienced hand to crafting an exciting new future.”

    Ms. Ford has served as primary lead for SCBIO’s business operations and finances, championing investor relations and existing industry strategies, and spearheading integrated marketing initiatives. She has managed the majority of the organization’s day-to-day requirements since joining SCBIO in 2017.

    Since 2017, SCBIO has more than tripled membership and quadrupled revenues, implemented a strong economic development focus, and launched a new innovation platform. It serves as the voice of the life sciences industry, implemented a surging workforce development initiative and created ongoing programs to encourage participation by women in life sciences, to support diversity-equity-inclusion initiatives and to encourage student participation in the industry. The organization also successfully led industry and organizational pivots during the COVID pandemic.  In a recent executive order, Governor Henry McMaster authorized SCBIO and the state’s Commerce Department to work together to accelerate the onshoring and repatriation of the pharmaceutical industry and vital PPE products and technologies to South Carolina.

    For additional information on SCBIO, please visit www.SCBIO.org.

  • sam patrick posted an article
    Company investing, adding jobs to expand capabilities see more

    Arthrex, an orthopedic technology innovator, today announced plans to expand operations in Anderson County. The more than $100 million investment will create 500 new jobs.

    Founded in 1981, Arthrex is a global leader in orthopedic surgical device design, research, manufacturing and medical education. The company develops and releases more than 1,000 innovative products and surgical procedures each year to advance minimally invasive orthopedics worldwide.

    Located at 130 Arthrex Drive in Pendleton, Arthrex’s expansion will include adding a second manufacturing facility and an Electron-beam (E-beam) and X-ray sterilizations facility.

    The expansion is expected to be completed by mid-2023. Individuals interested in joining the Arthrex team should visit the company’s careers webpage.

     QUOTES

    “This investment will help Arthrex better support the growth and development of new and innovative products that help surgeons treat their patients better. Arthrex has been committed to manufacturing quality products in the United States, and this represents that continued commitment.” -Arthrex Vice President of Manufacturing Andy Owen

    “I congratulate Arthrex on this more than $100 million investment in our state. The 500 new jobs this expansion is generating will make a big difference in Anderson County, and we look forward to watching this great company continue to thrive here for years to come.” -Gov. Henry McMaster

    “Arthrex is on the cutting edge of orthopedic innovation and is a leader in our state’s booming life sciences sector. Today’s announcement by Arthrex not only proves that South Carolina has the business environment where life sciences companies can succeed, but that we have the talented workforce in place to handle the most innovative jobs. Team S.C. congratulates Arthrex on their continued success.” -Secretary of Commerce Harry M. Lightsey III

    “Our partnership with Arthrex is succeeding beyond anyone’s expectations. They showed a lot of faith in our community when they began their journey with us a few short years ago, and today’s announcement indicates the level of confidence they have in our workforce. These jobs will improve the lives of hundreds of Anderson County families, and I am truly thankful.” -Anderson County Councilman Brett Sanders, District 4

    FIVE FAST FACTS

    • Arthrex is expanding operations in Anderson County.
    • The more than $100 million investment will create 500 new jobs.
    • Arthrex is an orthopedic surgical device company.
    • Located at 130 Arthrex Drive in Pendleton, S.C.
    • Individuals interested in joining the Arthrex team should visit the company’s careers webpage.

  • sam patrick posted an article
    SCBIO takes aim at growing the presence of women in the life sciences industry see more

    Compliments of Scribble

    While COVID-19 brought the life sciences industry squarely into the world’s spotlight, the industry has been growing rapidly around the globe — and here in South Carolina — for quite some time.  From gene editing and stem cell research to health data analytics and telemedicine, amazing advances in next generation pharmaceuticals and vaccines, medical devices, diagnostics, digital health, bio-agriculture and more are reshaping our world, while also saving and improving lives.

    Life sciences in South Carolina are on a growth spurt accelerated by the pandemic. The number of firms in the industry has doubled since 2017, making it the fastest-growing industry sector in the state. The Moore School of Business estimated its annual economic impact at $12 billion and over 43,000 employees — even before COVID’s surge of growth.

    To fully realize the opportunity that life sciences represent for South Carolina, the Board of Directors of SCBIO have placed a priority on increasing diversity and inclusion in the industry here at home — with action replacing perfunctory policies. Those efforts are bearing fruit.  

    As the official life sciences industry organization for South Carolina, SCBIO has implemented a range of commitments, actions, and programs to encourage advancement for individual women and minorities, cultivate the next generations of female leaders, and strengthen and deepen the bench of talented women workers and leaders in organizations statewide.

    Among SCBIO’s numerous initiatives are:

    Leading by Example – Besides my role as Interim CEO, women comprise some 25% of SCBIO’s board of directors today, which is led by a female Board Chairman, Lou Kennedy, CEO and Founder of Nephron Pharmaceuticals. The Board has also launched a new Life Sciences Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council to support leadership development of women and minorities. The 2021-2022 SCBIO Strategic Plan for SC Life Sciences has an entire section dedicated to encouraging expanded women and minority participation in the industry.

    Relationship Building – Lt. Governor Pamela Evette, Chief External Affairs Officer for MUSC Caroline Brown, and Vikor Scientific’s Partner & Co-Founder Shea Harrelson are a few of many visible leaders actively encouraging young women to expand relationships across life sciences.  This network of women leaders is deep and growing, consisting of female leaders in education, manufacturing, logistics, research, medicine, government, economic development and more who reach out to support each other’s development, share ideas, problem solve and encourage skill growth.   

    Supporting Career Choice for Young Women – Life science jobs are not just for M.D.s and Ph.Ds, but for technical college graduates, engineers, and biology and chemistry majors as well. With an average life sciences position paying $79,000 here, SCBIO is promoting the industry as a career path to students, guidance counselors and parents at the K-12 and two- and four-year college levels.  It is also developing an industry-advocated curriculum for technical colleges covering industry prescribed manufacturing processes, safety and technical protocols, soft skills and more.  A recent statewide Young Women in Life Sciences ZOOM drew over 500 high school attendees from dozens of schools across the state to learn about careers in life sciences.

    Connecting Young Women – Via events and community outreach such as Virtual Meetups for women in the industry and a Women in Life Sciences Visit with our Lt. Governor, SCBIO is connecting women at all levels of life sciences organizations across the state to share information on career paths, leading teams, personal development, handling difficult conversations, encouraging innovation and more to help them connect and learn together — and encourage others they know to consider the industry as a career path.

    Establishing New Partnerships – New partnerships such as serving as Presenting Sponsor of Furman University’s Women’s Leadership Institute and providing scholarships at the BMW-SYNNEX 2021 Women’s Executive Luncheon create new opportunities to have life sciences as a visible part of the discussion.     

    Now more than ever, women in life sciences are leading the way to the industry’s rapid growth and expansion in South Carolina… and around the world.  Here at home, SCBIO is working to inspire women of all ages to choose, grow and thrive in this dynamic industry by relying on, inspiring and supporting each other to attain even greater levels of success.

    The future is bright and getting even brighter as more women step up to lead the way to a brighter tomorrow.

     September 08, 2021
  • sam patrick posted an article
    Two life sciences companies make list for SCRA support see more

    Compliments of Midlands Biz

    Advent Innovations, LLC and DPX Technologies, LLC have been accepted as South Carolina Research Authority (SCRA) Member Companies and awarded grant funding. Parimer Scientific, LLC and Prewrite, Inc. have been accepted as Member Companies. As Member Companies, they will receive coaching, access to experts in SCRA’s Resource Partner Network, eligibility to apply for grant funding, and the potential to be considered for an investment from SCRA’s affiliate, SC Launch, Inc.

    Advent Innovations Limited Company has been accepted as an SCRA Member Company and awarded a $50,000 Federal Matching Grant. The University of South Carolina-affiliated startup provides services in modeling, analysis, design, and product development using cutting-edge research with novel sensors, big data analytics, and other smart technology such as robotics. Their customers include private corporations and government entities in aerospace, automotive, civil infrastructure, and energy.

    DPX Technologies, LLC has been accepted as an SCRA Member Company and awarded a $50,000 Federal Matching Grant. The University of South Carolina-affiliated company manufactures sample lab preparation products and develops custom methods for a diverse client base. Their proprietary and patented INTip™ technologies provide efficient, automated solutions for laboratories that are easy to customize and implement with any workflow or method.

    Parimer Scientific, LLC has been accepted as an SCRA Member Company. The Easley-based company provides turn-key laboratory services at competitive rates to biotech and pharmaceutical companies with no upfront capital or long-term commitment needed. In 2020 alone, more than 10,000 units of pharmaceutical products were made at Parimer and shipped directly to the end-users at hospitals, doctor’s offices, and nursing homes.

    Prewrite, Inc. has been accepted as an SCRA Member Company. The Greenville-based startup offers a story development platform for writers, producers, and content creators of all types. Their powerful tool ensures the writer is using good story fundamentals. Stories of any complexity are easily built, piece-by-piece. Originally designed for screenplays, Prewrite is used around the world by professionals and amateurs alike.

    SCRA welcomes these new Member Companies!

    Grant funding is made possible, in part, by Industry Partnership Fund (IPF) contributions that fuel the state’s innovation economy. Contributors to the IPF receive a dollar-for-dollar state tax credit, making it an easy and effective way to help one of the fastest growing segments of the South Carolina economy. Grant funding for Member Companies creates a direct, positive economic effect and job creation.

    About SCRA
    https://scra.org/
    Chartered in 1983 by the State of South Carolina as a public, nonprofit corporation, South Carolina Research Authority (SCRA) fuels South Carolina’s innovation economy through the impact of its four programs. SC Academic Innovations provides funding and support to advance translational research and accelerate the growth of university-based startups. SC Facilities offers high-quality laboratory and administrative workspaces for technology-based startups and academic institutions. SC Industry Solutions facilitates and funds partnerships between and among startups, industry, and academia. SC Launch mentors and funds technology-based startups that may also receive investments from SCRA’s investment affiliate, SC Launch, Inc.

     September 08, 2021
  • sam patrick posted an article
    Life sciences expands career opportunities for SC graduates see more

    Compliments of Lowcountry Graduate Press

    COVID caused pain and heartache and death across the world and here in the Lowcountry, but it also revealed some bright spots. One of those is the life sciences industry, which was responsible for diagnosing COVID, providing responses, and ultimately developing effective vaccines.

    Coincidentally, the life sciences industry in South Carolina is itself on a growth spurt that was accelerated by the pandemic. The number of firms in the industry had doubled in the last four years, making it the fastest-growing industry sector in the state. The Darla Moore School of Business estimated its annual economic impact at $12 billion before the most recent spike.

    Life sciences produce next-generation pharmaceuticals and vaccines; advanced medical devices, diagnostics, and testing; digital health; bioscience distribution; bio-agriculture and biomaterials; and biological solutions for advanced manufacturing.

    Life sciences also encompass two areas of focus for the Lowcountry Graduate Center – advanced manufacturing and healthcare management. While the connection with healthcare is obvious, many people don’t realize that life science research and advanced manufacturing work symbiotically. Many life science innovations, like medical devices, require advanced manufacturing to produce, while life science innovations can power the process of advanced manufacturing itself.

    Career Opportunities in Life Sciences

    That means jobs, and not just for M.D.s and Ph.D.’s, but for technical college graduates and university biology and chemistry majors as well. The average life sciences position pays $79,000, according to the official state affiliate of the U.S. Biotechnology Innovation Organization, also referred to as SCBIO, the nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the life sciences industry in S.C. Because workforce development is the primary challenge facing the industry, SCBIO is engaged in an initiative to promote the industry as a career path for students, guidance counselors, and parents at the K-12 level and in two- and four-year college.

    Indeed, SCBIO is in the process of developing an industry-advocated life sciences curriculum for technical colleges that can prepare graduates for jobs in the field. Courses would cover manufacturing processes; safety and technical protocols like measurements and ISO standards; soft skills required for all workplaces; and the connections between the various life science components and the life-saving innovations they support.

    “We want to get to students even sooner so we’re partnering with organizations that are already in schools to add more of the ‘S’ in STEM,” said Erin Ford, interim CEO at SCBIO. “If someone takes a course at Trident Tech, they can get a job paying $50,000 or more with health insurance while working on a product that helps people live better lives.”

    The vector of life science development is different depending on the area of the state, with the Lowcountry showing strength in biotechnology, pharmaceutical, and manufacturing, says Ford.

    Life Science Companies Need Space to Grow

    Besides workforce development, the next big challenge constraining growth is space. Lab space at the new WestEdge development in downtown Charleston was fully subscribed when it opened and now developers are seeking new space. Clean labs are more complex and costly to retrofit and build than ordinary office or warehouse space.

    Nonetheless, the firms keep coming – or starting – and the state has gotten behind the industry. As a critical step, it authorized and funded SCBIO as the state’s lead life sciences industry economic development organization.

    Life science provides more than just more job growth: it provides diversification of an economy that 30 years ago relied heavily on a Navy base that packed up and left. Life sciences are more recession-resistant than automotive and aeronautics, two areas of manufacturing strength in the Lowcountry that respond to retail market demand. People never cease needing health innovations.

    Recognizing that, the Charleston Regional Development Alliance (CRDA) and South Carolina Research Authority have backed the industry. CRDA was the first development authority in the state to build map out a strategic plan to attract and retain life science businesses.

    Headwinds for Life Sciences in South Carolina

    Sam Konduros of KOR Medical, a clinical cannabis firm launched by the Charleston-based diagnostic and testing company Vikor Scientific, says South Carolina and SCBIO have created a business climate conducive to the industry, and the health care and advanced manufacturing infrastructure have added tailwinds to its development. Citing Vikor’s growth from 45 employees to 450 during COVID, he says recruiting a talented workforce has not been a significant challenge so far. He notes the usual Charleston quality-of-life benefits – weather, beaches, history, and food, in addition to the growing vibrancy of the industry – as recruiting tools have contributed to the success.

    Ford and Konduros see possible headwinds elsewhere for the industry. Roadways and other transportation infrastructure could use improvement, and housing availability and affordability are statewide issues. For example, the state’s franchise tax, now eliminated by 36 states, penalizes early-stage companies successfully raising venture capital before going to market. In an industry that often spends millions to earn FDA approval prior to commercialization, the tax is a burden, they say.

     September 02, 2021