Vikor Scientific featured in Charleston, Columbia and Greenville Business magazines see more
A number of South Carolina-based life sciences companies joined the battle against COVID-19 when the pandemic hit in early March. Prominent among this group is Charleston-based Vikor Scientific, a testing laboratory founded just over two years ago by entrepreneurs Shae Harrelson and Scotty Branch.
Vikor developed a COVID-19 test kit that is now widely used by nursing homes and other healthcare facilities across the nation. The test kit also tests for more than 40 other pathogens known to cause respiratory illness. Click to enjoy the entire article...
Furman Innovation team to provide interns to KOPIS see more
Greenville software development company, Kopis, has partnered with Furman University’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Summer Bootcamp and NEXT to bring in summer interns to learn more about tech careers and to simulate the feel of a startup this summer
Furman University’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Summer Bootcamp is a three-week program designed to help non-business students learn business basics.
“Our partnership with NEXT has always been valuable,” said Matt Reeve, Furman internship coordinator. “They help connect our Summer Bootcamp students with opportunities that will help them grow their business skills.”
NEXT’s Vice President Brenda Laakso said one of the underlying foundations of NEXT is to help cultivate tech talent in the Greenville area.
“Working with Furman interns and helping them become more comfortable in an entrepreneurial environment, and that the program with Kopis will definitely help enhance the students’ business skills,” she said.
Ian Martens and Mike Miller are the students taking part in the program. Martens is a rising junior majoring in Economics and Miller is a rising sophomore majoring in Computer Science. Martens and Miller will be learning business and entrepreneurial essentials, and will also be working with the ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) team, working virtually to develop automated tools that can be used to migrate data from simple accounting systems such as Quickbooks and Zero to Microsoft Dynamics BC (Business Central). They will also be trained and encouraged by Kopis’ Software Engineering team and will have a deep immersion into the real-world software development experience.
“We are thrilled to be taking part in Furman’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Summer Bootcamp,” said Andy Kurtz, Kopis’ founder and a Furman alum. “We know they will enjoy the experience, learning about both new product development and software development, and the will exit with a much better understanding of how software development works.”
Prisma Health has named its new President and CEO see more
Prisma Health announced the selection of Mark S. O’Halla as the health company’s new president and chief executive officer (CEO). O’Halla, along with the members of the executive leadership team, will be responsible for advancing the health company’s goal to create a better state of health in South Carolina by improving clinical quality, the patient experience, access to care, and addressing rising health care costs. O’Halla will join Prisma Health in mid-August. Prisma Health is a Mission Partner of SCBIO, the life sciences organization of South Carolina.
O’Halla has been serving as executive vice president/chief operating officer of Michigan-based McLaren Health Care since 2014. He has more than 30 years of progressive experience in health care senior executive roles, including 13 years with the McLaren organization.
The board of directors was pleased with the high-quality candidates they reviewed for this important role. “We are honored to select Mark as our next leader. We believe his experience leading a multiregional health care system will be a critical element in ensuring Prisma Health continues its journey to transform health care for our communities. We look forward to working with Mark to ensure that South Carolinians get the quality health care they need and deserve,” said James E. “Rick” Wheeler, chair of the Prisma Health board of directors and vice president of M-D Metal Source.
O’Halla added, “Joining Prisma Health and its 32,000 team members is an exciting opportunity to help redefine and continue improving health care for patients in South Carolina. I am proud to be part of this vibrant new health company, focused on providing exemplary quality, smart growth and sustained financial strength. I am also excited to work with physicians and university partners to advance its academic mission.”
As the executive vice president/chief operating officer at McLaren Health Care, a 14-hospital system with two health insurance plans covering 583,000 lives, O’Halla spearheaded initiatives to achieve top performance in areas of financial, operating and clinical quality, created a standardized patient-centered focus across the system that improved patient satisfaction, directed the alignment and growth of its Medical Group, and led efforts to integrate various clinical and administrative elements of the health system.
O’Halla earned his bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Finance from the University of Toledo, Toledo, Ohio; and master’s degree in Business Administration from William E. Simon Graduate School of Business at the University of Rochester, Rochester, New York. He is active in several health care organizations including American College of Healthcare Executives and served on several community boards.
O’Halla and his wife, Anita, will be relocating to Greenville, South Carolina. They have three grown children.
In January, Prisma Health launched the national search for its new CEO to lead the organization formed by the partnership of South Carolina’s largest health care systems, Greenville Health System (GHS), now Prisma Health–Upstate and Palmetto Health, now Prisma Health–Midlands.
Physicians who participated in O’Halla’s selection look forward to working with him as Prisma Health’s first president and CEO.
The current Co-CEOs, Michael C. Riordan, former CEO of Greenville Health System and Charles D. Beaman Jr., former CEO of Palmetto Health, have been working together over the last two years to set a strong foundation of governance and leadership for Prisma Health. Six months ago, Beaman and Riordan began focusing on specific areas to ensure Prisma Health was operating efficiently. Riordan has been responsible for driving several strategic projects to position the organization for long-term success, including facilitating the CEO search. On Friday, May 31, he will conclude his final project and fulfill his commitment to the organization, at which time he will retire from Prisma Health. Beaman has been focused on Prisma Health operations and will fulfill his commitment to the organization and step down from Prisma Health upon O’Halla’s arrival.
About Prisma Health
Prisma Health is a not-for-profit health company and South Carolina’s largest private employer. We are committed to excellence in providing patient care, conducting clinical research and teaching the next generation of physicians, nurses, dentists and other medical professionals. Our organization was formed in late 2017 when Greenville Health System and Palmetto Health joined together, officially becoming Prisma Health in January 2019. With nearly 32,000 team members, 18 hospitals and more than 300 physician practice sites, Prisma Health serves more than 1.2 million patients annually – about one quarter of the state’s population. Our goal is to improve the health of all South Carolinians by improving clinical quality, the patient experience and access to affordable care. Our groundbreaking programs in cardiovascular, diabetes, neuroscience, oncology and orthopedics care – as well as our two renowned Children’s Hospitals – attract patients from throughout the Southeast. Ultimately, we are dedicated to transforming the health care experience for our patients and their families, our team members and our guests by bringing our purpose to life: Inspire health. Serve with compassion. Be the difference. For more information, visit PrismaHealth.org.
Ty Kourlas posted an articleS.C. life science group, SCBIO, names new leader as young industry gains attention. see more
A longtime booster of the Upstate's economy is taking on a new challenge with a broader reach and a narrower focus: growing South Carolina's nascent life sciences industry.
SCBIO - a trade group representing biotechnology companies - has named Sam Konduros its next president and CEO, a move that comes as state officials increasingly eye the business as a target for South Carolina's economy.
Konduros, a former SCBIO board member, comes to the group from the Greenville Health System, where he ran an office that helped doctors take their inventions to market. Previously, he was the first president of the Upstate SC Alliance, the region's economic-development agency.
At Greenville-based SCBIO - short for the S.C. Biotechnology Industry Organization - he'll be tasked with helping to grow an industry that's only recently taken shape here.
The life sciences cover a broad mix of companies, from firms developing new drugs and researchers inventing medical devices to the manufacturers that make them. And while the state has a toehold into most corners of the sector, it's still relatively small here, employing about 17,500 workers statewide.
"It's a young industry that has the opportunity to grow into a powerful economic bookend for South Carolina," Konduros said.
The group's outgoing president, Wayne Roper, is credited with helping to map out its extent. His last task in the role is to finish a study backed by the S.C. Commerce Department outlining what life science companies are in the state, and where it's best poised to grow.
When he starts next month, Konduros's job will be to take those findings and bring them to fruition. The issues facing the life sciences industry, meantime, aren't so different from the state's technology sector as a whole.
New companies face challenges finding investments to fund their early operations before revenue rolls in. And the state is often overlooked amid regional powerhouses like Atlanta and North Carolina's Research Triangle.
Konduros says he'd like to turn that tide by marketing South Carolina to investors and industry executives - to sell them on the state's research universities and its emerging startup community. And he expects to take that message to the state's General Assembly, too.
Meantime, economic-development agencies have warmed to the sector recently. At the Commerce Department, the state Council on Competitiveness is now targeting biotech as a growth area for the state. And in the Lowcountry, the Charleston Regional Development Alliance is studying the sector as well.
"We're at a critical time for that growth," said Erin Ford, SCBIO's board chair. "When you have change it's an opportunity to really listen and take stock."
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Ty Kourlas posted an articleSCBIO named Sam Konduros, as the new president and CEO of the statewide not-for-profit entity see more
The South Carolina Biotechnology Industry Organization (SCBIO) named Sam Konduros, a business leader and biomedical and economic development consultant, as the new president and CEO of the statewide not-for-profit entity. SCBIO represents and catalyzes innovators in medicine, medical devices and biomaterials.
Konduros, a member of the SCBIO board, is the founder of SK Strategies LLC launched in 2004, and has led or consulted numerous state economic development efforts. He also served as executive director of Greenville Health System’s Research Development Corporation from 2014 to 2016.
“Sam’s strengths in knowing the biotech sector and his deep experience in business and economic development were compelling,” said Erin Ford, Chair of SCBIO. “The board was won over by his vision for the growth of SCBIO.”
As executive director for the GHS RDC, Konduros worked to facilitate tech transfer, attract new biomedical companies and grow collaborations between clinicians, researchers, and health educators while nurturing startups in shared lab space. He also chaired the healthcare system’s IP Committee, and helped develop the concept for a new life sciences innovation district referred to as the IMED Innovation Corridor.
“I greatly appreciate the SCBIO board’s passion for serving and advancing South Carolina’s rapidly growing life sciences community and industry sector, and for their vote of confidence in my leadership capabilities for the organization going forward,“ Konduros said. “I am highly motivated to get officially started in this exciting new role in late April, and I am confident we will have some dynamic and innovative new initiatives to announce by the time our annual conference takes place in Charleston Oct. 25-26.”
Konduros also served as a multi-year consultant to help forge the Clemson University’s International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR). He was the founding president and CEO of The Upstate SC Alliance. Konduros is a former Cancer Society chairman, Greenville Chamber chairman, and SC Chamber of Commerce executive committee member. He has a law degree from the University of South Carolina and undergraduate degree from Clemson.
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