SCBIO believes growing the life sciences sector will significantly transform the state’s economy. see more
Compliments of the Community Journal...
It was all smiles on Sept. 30 as BMW marked the 25th anniversary of the first vehicle to roll off its Spartanburg assembly line, a singular moment that dramatically transformed the economic face of South Carolina.
A quarter-century after opening, the German manufacturer’s North American facility employs more than 11,000 workers who build 1,500 vehicles daily, a pace requiring the services of more than 40 main suppliers across the state.
The average wage among all S.C. jobs supported by the automotive industry stood at $64,120 in 2017 compared to $40,293 across all employment categories, say findings commissioned by the South Carolina Biotechnology Industry Organization (SCBIO).
Now three years old, SCBIO is spearheading an aggressive initiative to make South Carolina the preferred location for new or expanding companies in another highly promising industry: life sciences. Read the entire story by clicking here.
Greenwood Genetic Center, MUSC affiliate to improve patient access to innovations in genetic servicesMUSC partners with Greenwood Genetic Center see more
The Greenwood Genetic Center (GGC) and the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) have signed an affiliation agreement with the goal of providing patients across South Carolina with accessible, high-quality, coordinated and cost-effective genetic services through a collaborative approach to providing medical care. The two entities have worked together informally on clinical consultations, provider education and research for more than a decade. This affiliation seeks to formalize and expand the depth and breadth of the relationship. According to MUSC, a partnership with the state’s most advanced and innovative genetic center was an easy choice.
“I live in Greenwood, and I’ve said for years that a lot people don’t understand what an absolute gem this center is,” said Charles Schulze, chairman of the MUSC Board of Trustees. “They’ve helped almost 100,000 families across the state make incredibly important decisions, unmasked difficult-to-diagnose conditions, and have been there for these families every step of the way when faced with good news, or not so good news.”
While there are any number of reasons people may want to learn more about how their genetics may affect their or their loved ones health, all patients want the same thing: high-quality care at the lowest cost and access to the latest technologies, diagnostics and research related to their genetic stories. In the interest of better serving these needs, the initial goals of the partnership include:
- Increasing access to clinical genetic services for MUSC patients and all South Carolinians
- Optimizing the patient journey to improve wait times for appointments and consultations
- Sharing critical resources and expertise where possible to lower costs
- Pursuing workforce development, research, clinical trials and treatment collaborations.
Nearly every child in South Carolina who was diagnosed with a genetic birth defect, developmental delay or other hereditary disorder has already been referred to GGC, due to the center’s expertise with rare conditions and commitment to new technologies and diagnostics. GGC, a nonprofit institute centered on research, clinical genetic services, diagnostic laboratory testing and educational programs and resources, is focused on compassionate patient care and innovative scientific advancement.
About Greenwood Genetic Center
The Greenwood Genetic Center (GGC), founded in 1974, is a nonprofit organization advancing the field of medical genetics and caring for families impacted by genetic disease and birth defects. At its home campus in Greenwood, South Carolina, a talented team of physicians and scientists provides clinical genetic services, diagnostic laboratory testing, educational programs and resources, and research in the field of medical genetics. GGC’s faculty and staff are committed to the goal of developing preventive and curative therapies for the individuals and families they serve. GGC extends its reach as a resource to all residents of South Carolina with satellite offices in Charleston, Columbia, Florence and Greenville. For more information about GGC please visit www.ggc.org.
South Carolina Life Sciences Industry Honors Commerce Secretary Hitt, Abbott's Tom Strange, Nephron Pharmaceuticals for Leadership, Contributions to IndustrySC Commerce's Bobby Hitt, Abbott's Tom Strange, Nephron saluted by SCBIO see more
Nearly 350 industry leaders on hand to salute inaugural honorees for commitment to advancing South Carolina’s booming life sciences industry
NOVEMBER 2, 2018 – To resounding applause from a record gathering from 4 countries, 22 states and virtually every county in South Carolina, life sciences leaders saluted three leaders – two individuals and one organization – for profound positive impact and exceptional contributions to the advancement of South Carolina’s $11.4 billion life sciences industry.
South Carolina Secretary of Commerce Robert M. “Bobby” Hitt III was presented with the inaugural South Carolina Life Sciences Hall of Fame Award for his personal championing of the life sciences industry, which today has an $11.4 billion annual economic impact in the Palmetto State, with more than 400 firms directly involved and 15,000 professionals employed in the research, development and commercialization of innovative healthcare, medical device, industrial, environmental and agricultural biotechnology products. SC Commerce is a Founding Partner and strategic supporter of SCBIO, and has been highly instrumental in helping the rapid growth of life sciences in the Palmetto State.
Mr. Hitt has served as South Carolina Secretary of Commerce since January 2011. Promoting a team-first approach to economic development, Hitt has positioned the S.C. Department of Commerce and its many partners and allies for industry recruitment success. Since 2011, Team South Carolina has recruited more than $35 billion in capital investment and approximately 125,000 new jobs to the state. This year alone, multiple world-class companies have made significant investments in South Carolina, including BMW, Samsung and Volvo Cars. Before his time as Secretary of Commerce, Hitt served as manager of Corporate Affairs at the BMW Manufacturing Company in Spartanburg County after 17 years as managing editor of The State and Columbia Record newspapers.
Presented with the inaugural South Carolina Life Sciences Pinnacle Award for Individual Contribution to the industry was Tom Strange, Senior Director of Research & Development for Abbott Labs in Liberty, South Carolina. With an extensive background in materials science, Mr. Strange holds 48 patents and has authored numerous papers covering all aspects of capacitor development. He began his illustrious career with Philips Components in 1979 leading research activity involving development of capacitors that made thoracic implantable cardioverter defibrillators possible. Today, with over 20 years at St Jude Medical/Abbott, his team continues to define state of the art in implantable medical devices for pacing and arrhythmia correction, neuromodulation and battery performance.
Honored for his exceptional industry-related contributions and profound impact on the state, its citizens and the life sciences industry, Mr. Strange led efforts to establish SC Launch!, the public/private initiative with the SC legislature to fund start-up activities in SC under SCRA, and helped to launch SCBIO as an affiliate of the national BIO organization. He holds numerous honors and awards, and earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in Physics from the University of South Carolina.
Presented with the inaugural South Carolina Life Sciences Pinnacle Award for Organizational Contribution to the industry was Nephron Pharmaceuticals of West Columbia, represented by owners Lou and Bill Kennedy. A Vision Partner of SCBIO, CEO Lou Kennedy joined Nephron Pharmaceuticals in 2001, and was named President/CEO in 2007. She led the creation of a state of the art manufacturing facility in West Columbia in 2014, and oversaw development of a national sales force which helped Nephron grow by 300% and increased shipped product to over one billion doses annually.
Honored for Nephron’s economic, innovation, social and quality of life impact in the state, the Kennedy’s helped establish the Kennedy Pharmacy Innovation Center in conjunction with the USC School of Pharmacy. Ms. Kennedy serves on or chairs numerous boards including those of SCBIO, the SC Chamber of Commerce, the National Bank of South Carolina, and the South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance.
The three honorees joined BIO global CEO Jim Greenwood and more than 50 additional national speakers at SCBIO 2018 – the annual conference which brought top leaders and executives from life sciences organizations across the state and nation to Charleston, South Carolina October 23-25.
Included among attendees were scores of top industry chief executives, leaders in government and higher education, biotechnology and pharma executives, clinicians and researchers, and industry supporters from across America including DePuy Synthes Global Orthopedic Leader I.V. Hall, J.P. Morgan Executive Director of Healthcare Investment Banking Bell Zhong, MUSC President David Cole, USC President Harris Pastides, Siemens Healthineers North Americas President Dave Pacitti, and numerous others.
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 an $11.4 billion economic impact in the Palmetto State, with more than 400 firms directly involved and 15,000 professionals employed in the research, development and commercialization of innovative healthcare, medical device, industrial, environmental and agricultural biotechnology products.
“The life sciences industry is a major driver of South Carolina’s economy, and these noted honorees and this conference is testament to the industry’s growing impact, reach and rapidly rising economic significance in our state and region,” noted SCBIO President and CEO Sam Konduros. “We’re pleased to honor them for their many contributions, and salute them for the advances they have facilitated for this industry.”
As the official state affiliate of BIO -- the world's largest trade association representing biotechnology organizations – SCBIO members include hundreds of 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, visit www.SCBIO.org.
Milliken Healthcare expands via acquisition see more
Milliken & Company, a global innovation company with more than a century of performance and protective textile, specialty chemical and floor covering expertise, announces the acquisition of Andover Healthcare, a leading manufacturer of cohesive bandages and compression systems spanning healthcare, animal health and sports medicine markets. Joining Milliken Healthcare Products, LLC, Milliken & Company’s dedicated healthcare business, the acquisition strategically aligns two respected brands in patient care, bringing streamlined, comprehensive and innovative solutions to healthcare providers.
Milliken and Andover Healthcare share a commitment to making a positive impact on the world with high quality, innovative and patient-driven products.
“Andover Healthcare is a natural fit for Milliken. We are equally committed to improving the patient healing experience through innovative solutions, and our shared focus on ethics and integrity unites us culturally,” commented Halsey Cook, Milliken & Company president and CEO. “Our combined expertise and common drive to create innovative solutions invite us to set the bar for comprehensive patient care that helps create a healthier future.”
Headquartered in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, family-owned Andover Healthcare has been manufacturing healthcare solutions since 1976. The company is responsible for many notable developments in healthcare products, including a latex-free bandage and cohesive bandages with controlled compression. Its portfolio complements Milliken Healthcare’s offering of award-winning Active Fluid Management dressings for wound and burn care.
“Joining Milliken is the right progression for Andover Healthcare to usher in its next level of growth,” shared Andover Healthcare founder and CEO, Tom Murphy. “We look forward to serving our customers at a greater capacity with the research, design and manufacturing capabilities as well as trusted brand recognition that Milliken brings.”
About Milliken Healthcare Products, LLC
Milliken Healthcare Products, LLC brings innovative textiles to the healthcare market with the purpose to create a healthier future. Setting a high bar of excellence, its award-winning solutions redefine how textiles can function to improve the patient healing experience for wound and burn care through solutions that increase efficiency, reduce waste and improve cost. Milliken Healthcare Products, LLC is a subsidiary of Milliken & Company, a global manufacturer with expertise spanning specialty chemicals, floor covering, and performance and protective textiles, and leans on the company’s 153-year legacy of trust and innovation. Discover more at healthcare.milliken.com.
About Andover Healthcare
Since 1976, Andover Healthcare has strived to produce high quality products that fill a need for customers. From its roots as a manufacturer of sports medicine tape to its focus today on break-through, innovative products, Andover Healthcare medical tape, cohesive and wound bandages fill a gap in the healthcare, animal health and sports medicine industries. Andover Healthcare has been there to produce high quality, made in the USA products that improve the lives of its customers. Learn more at andoverhealthcare.com.
Greenville-based Health IT firm Chartspan lands $15 million in funding from BIP Capital see more
One of the Upstate’s biggest entrepreneurial success stories is ready to begin its next stage of growth, and with it, the expectation of 200 to 300 more jobs over the next 24 to 36 months, almost all of them in Greenville.
With a just-closed funding round of $15 million from a syndicate led by BIP Capital, an Atlanta-based venture capital firm, ChartSpan Medical Technologies is doubling its deployed capital, for a total of $30 million.
Now, new funding in hand, ChartSpan will spend “a majority” of it to embark on a national sales and marketing strategy designed to capture an even larger share of the chronic care management market, said co-founder and CEO Jon-Michial Carter.
Founded in Houston, Texas, ChartSpan chose Greenville for its headquarters in 2013 and soon emerged as the largest managed-service provider affiliated with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) chronic care management program. Currently, ChartSpan offers technology-enabled coordination of care to the patients of 106 health systems and medical practices, most of them in the Southeast.
Working from ChartSpan’s offices at 2 N. Main St., trained clinicians assist patients with such varied needs as contacting a nurse 24/7, refilling prescriptions, accessing medical test results, making appointments, and securing transportation, with clinical data exchanged between ChartSpan’s electronic records platform and those used by hospitals and physicians.
Nationally, ChartSpan is the market leader in the space with “the largest enrolled population in the country” served by about 200 employees, Carter said.
“Last month, there were 61 million Medicare and Medicare Advantage patients, and that is the audience that we serve,” said Carter. “CMS says 72% of them are eligible for the program we run … so 45 million available patients and we have just under 30,000 patients enrolled. So, it’s this blue ocean of opportunity.”
To capitalize on such a wide-open market, Carter sought to build on prior funding rounds in a way that would allow his company to reach mid-sized status rapidly.
Ultimately, Carter chose to partner with BIP Capital, a venture capital investment firm whose focus includes health care IT, enterprise software-as-a-service, and digital media.
Founded in 2007, the firm has invested more than $300 million since inception. Its CEO, Mark Buffington, has led investment rounds in more than 35 companies, with BIP Capital offering both funding and operational recommendations.
In a brief telephone interview, Buffington said South Carolina’s Upstate fits his firm’s focus on “second-tier innovation centers” in geographic areas “not nearly as competitive as a Boston market or a Bay Area.”
“We feel there’s just tons of uncovered opportunities,” Buffington said, citing venture partnerships in place in Minneapolis; Indianapolis; and Columbus, Ohio.
BIP Capital was attracted to ChartSpan in large part due to its early understanding of the chronic care management landscape, said Austin Poole, a senior associate.
“They’d figured out the complex parts of the process, where a lot of other groups that we had looked at were still kind of in that developmental phase, and some of them thought they might have had it figured out, but a closer look said that there might be more steps before they actually got there,” Poole said during a visit to Greenville.
The $15 million deal led by BIP includes syndicate partners Blue Heron Capital of Richmond, Virginia; Bailey Southwell & Co. of Nashville, Tennessee; and Croft & Bender of Atlanta. All four members of the syndicate hold preferred stock equity stakes in ChartSpan.
“Blue Heron is interesting because their entire LP [limited partnership] structure are just former health care executives that have run large enterprise companies,” Carter noted. “So, that was obvious, the attraction for us, and we spent time with them in Richmond, and again, loved the regional focus,” Carter said.
Poole, along with BIP Vice President Sarath Degala, will operate out of Greenville’s NEXT on Main incubator and will collaborate with Carter and other ChartSpan personnel on the company’s growth while also becoming familiar with other businesses in the region.
“We expect to hold office hours, take part in pitch events, mentor entrepreneurs and companies, provide guidance in strategies and funding alternatives as well as hopefully become engrained in the VC infrastructure in the community,” Degala said via email.
John Moore, president and CEO of NEXT, believes BIP Capital’s arrival in the Upstate represents a turning point in the evolution of funding for entrepreneurs.
“One of the biggest things obviously in any ecosystem is building access to capital. … We’ve been working on that for a long time, and to see something like this happen and see BIP’s leadership, first and foremost in the investment in ChartSpan, is tremendous,” Moore said.According to Moore and Carter, BIP’s deepening commitment to the Upstate will provide a flight path to growth funding for a variety of local firms that successfully launched with seed money.
VentureSouth, which now operates 12 angel groups across the Carolinas, provides much of that early stage funding, said Matt Dunbar, one of its three managing directors. The combined group, with 320 active investors, has deployed $36 million for 67 companies since 2008.
Using preliminary data, the Angel Capital Association, a national trade group, just placed VentureSouth among the top 10 angel groups in the country in terms of dollars invested, or $7 million in 22 companies during 2018.“Matt was a resource and in some ways a mentor for me early on,” Carter remarked. “All of these things in Houston, Texas, where we came from, we would’ve got lost and drowned. We wouldn’t have had this kind of support.”
Now, Carter’s company looks set to add significantly more clients, revenues, and jobs.
“Part of what was so compelling for us about ChartSpan as an investment was, not only does it bring efficiency to the whole U.S. health care system, but also the impact that it has on the patients,” said BIP’s Austin Poole.
“Any time you’re positively impacting the end-user in that magnitude, we get excited about that,” he said.
Greenwood, South Carolina's globally recognized genetics center is further investing... see more
Greenwood Genetic Center has invested more than $1.75 million in laboratory equipment and a new on-site aquaculture facility that the organization says is the largest zebrafish facility in the state.
The new equipment includes a NovaSeq DNA sequencing system and a confocal microscopy system. The Illumina NovaSeq 6000 System offers high-throughput sequencing across a broad range of applications. The NovaSeq also meets the research needs of both the center and the Clemson Center for Human Genetics. Read the full news release here.
A Columbia, SC-based biotech firm has introduced a new INTip solution with a proprietry design... see more
Columbia, SC – DPX Technologies announces a new INTip solution that utilizes a proprietary design for micro-elution dispersive solid phase extraction. DPX INTip solutions are designed to simplify sample preparation methods, and the μElution dSPE tip provides an automated solution for optimal sensitivity.
“The μElution dSPE tips were developed as an addition to the dSPE product line, that give our customers the ability to reduce elution volumes and increase sensitivity for downstream analysis,” said William E. Brewer, Ph.D., Founder and CEO of DPX Technologies. “DPX micro-elution methods eliminate solvent evaporation and reduce the challenges for sample preparation of high throughput, high sensitivity assays.”
Humimic is opening doors to a world of medical research from right here in South Carolina see more
Accompanied by a contingent of life sciences leaders from SCBIO, the South Carolina Department of Commerce, Upstate Alliance, the Charleston Regional Development Alliance and others, South Carolina is making its presence felt at Arab Health 2019 -- the global medical and life sciences conference held annually in Dubai. And Greenville's own Humimic Medical is making its own presence felt as well.
Imagine a gelatin solution that mimics soft human tissue. One that doesn’t require refrigeration, and that opens doors to a world of medical industry research and training without the obstacles that come with cadavers.
The product exists, developed eight years ago by Joel Edwards in his Arkansas basement. It was sparked by an idea, and initially sold to defense companies for testing under the name Clear Ballistics.
In recent years, physicians and medical researchers took notice, prompting the spinoff of a company called Humimic Medical.
Moterum selected to present at prestigious medtech conference in Chicago, IL see more
Southeastern medtech company develops mobility solutions for patients suffering from strokes, neural traumas; forum convenes investors seeking leading-edge advances in health and life sciences
GREENVILLE, S.C. – July 11, 2018 – Moterum Technologies Inc., a South Carolina-based mobility and gait rehabilitation development company, has been selected to present at the prestigious Cavendish BioHealth Impact Forum July 17-18, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. The Forum provides an environment for organizations and investors to further their strategic social impact investing, grant-giving, and philanthropy programs in support of health and life sciences advances.
Co-hosted by Cavendish Global, the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, and MATTER, the Forum showcases presentations and panel discussions by leading research institutions, private-sector companies, nonprofit organizations, and foundations engaged in developing innovations with the potential for transformational impact on disease prevention, diagnosis and treatment. Cavendish BioHealth Impact Forums are hosted by leading institutions around the United States and take place several times each year.
Moterum Technologies is one of 10 featured organizations invited to present their solutions at the Chicago Conference. An innovative medical technology development company, Moterum’s focus is designed to help resolve mobility and gait problems for patients suffering a neural trauma, such as a stroke. Its lead product is a fully connected, smart device that teaches stroke patients how to re-learn walking in their own home.
“We are honored to be selected to present at the 2018 Chicago Forum, and value the recognition it will provide of our innovative approach to helping stroke survivors walk independently and without a limp or asymmetry,” said David Huizenga, CEO of Moterum Technologies. “Our device can be used at home and is fully connected and positioned for telehealth systems, making it a viable solution for developed and developing health systems alike. We welcome the chance to interact with many of the world’s most accomplished scientists, thought-leaders and generous philanthropic individuals and families who are all dedicated to improving the health and lives of people around the world.”
The Cavendish community consists of over 200 leading family offices, foundations and impact investors from around the world with combined assets of over $225 billion who share a passion for pro-social endeavors within health and the life sciences. The Cavendish BioHealth Impact Forum provides impact investors with a curated, peer-to-peer knowledge expansion and relationship building environment, and seeks to accelerate technological innovation and health access through sustainable philanthropy, grant-making and impact investing. The Forum is also an opportunity for impact investors to champion and share information on projects and organizations, which they are passionate about with other impact investors from around the world.
“With the help of our expert team, Selection Committee and advisors, we conduct a global search of research institutions and private-sector companies in order to identify organizations that meet the required standard of excellence,” said J. Michael Moffat, Chairman of Cavendish Global. “The quality and originality of Moterum Technologies’ research and scientific insights in treating gait problems of stroke survivors positions them to make a major contribution to global health by helping stroke survivors retake an independent position in society.”
For further information on Moterum Technologies, visit www.moterum.com.
About Moterum Technologies Inc.
Moterum Technologies is an innovative medical technology development company that focuses on solving mobility and gait problems for patients suffering a neural trauma, such as a stroke. Its lead product is a fully connected, smart device that teaches stroke patients to relearn how to walk in their own home.
Personalized approaches to treating autism spectrum disorder advance... see more
The Greenwood Genetic Center and Swiss biotechnology innovator, Stalicla, have signed a research agreement to collaborate on personalized approaches to treating autism spectrum disorder, or ASD. Stalicla has developed an algorithm platform based on big data to bring precision medicine to subtypes of autism spectrum disorder patients, according to a news release.
“Over the past 10 years, evidence has accumulated pointing toward alterations in molecular pathways that lead to abnormal cell functioning in ASD,” said Lynn Durham, CEO of Geneva-based Stalicla, in the release. “At Stalicla, we are looking to bring disease-modifying personalized medicine to patients with ASD, one subgroup after the other.”
Avara Pharmaceutical Services finalizes acquisition of GSK Consumer Healthcare facility in South CarolinaAvara Pharmaceutical Services has completed a South Carolina acquisition from GSK see more
Avara Pharmaceutical Services, a world-class contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO), announced that the acquisition of the GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) consumer healthcare manufacturing facility in Aiken, South Carolina (USA) is complete. Read on for full details...