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NanoKTN and IoN confirm success of UK nanotechnology mission to America

The Nanotechnology Knowledge Transfer Network (NanoKTN), one of the UK’s primary knowledge-based networks for Micro and Nanotechnologies, and the Institute of Nanotechnology (IoN), a professional membership organisation for the nanotechnology industry, are pleased to announce the success of the 2010 International NanoMicroClub (INMC) NanoMission to America. The mission, supported by Technology Strategy Board funding, was established to support UK nanotechnology SMEs in international business development.

The US is the largest market for biopharma, both in terms of the number of companies that the UK could partner with but also with regards to market size. In 2008 alone, the US has spent $2.3trillion on healthcare. To ensure the UK took advantage of the business potential in the US, the INMC organised a mission in September 2010, to BioPharm America™ and to visit various companies in Boston.

The UK mission team comprised BHR Group, Point-2-Point Genomics, Nanomerics, Conformetrix and EuropaRx. During the mission, they met with a number of organisations from Boston and the surrounding area, leading to five NDAs being signed. Despite business development being a long process, a number of potential opportunities for business and funding are already being explored, and the feedback from the mission delegates has been very positive.

Ray Harrison, CEO, Point-2-Point Genomics, adds, "We found the mission to Boston hugely useful and as a result, several opportunities have come our way. We already have several corporations and two venture capitalists looking closely at our platform. The event was very well organised and we were particularly impressed by how much the Americans had a raised fear of antibiotics resistance and as a result showed a great interest in our technology."

Anita Peil, Director and owner of EuropaRx comments; "The mission was irreplaceable. The one-on-one meetings, panel discussions, and presentations of novel products provided me with a broad, as well as detailed, view of venture companies, venture capitalists, and pharma industry partners in the US today, all essential for positioning my strategic services in the EU."

"At the NanoKTN we support the exploitation and commercialisation of micro and nanotechnologies and the aim of the US mission was to explore potential opportunities in the major Boston/Cambridge biopharma cluster," comments Dr Mike Fisher, Theme Manager at the NanoKTN.

Dr Fisher adds, "This major networking opportunity provided a platform for the UK delegation to present their work in the bio nanotech field, helping to assist these UK companies develop partnerships. Missions like this are crucial to give UK SMEs the opportunity to meet with potential customers and partners, and discover new business opportunities that otherwise would not be open to them."

Del Stark, Business Development Manager of the Institute of Nanotechnology adds, "Access to healthcare will be paramount in the coming years and the US is entering a critical period as its economy and healthcare systems are in flux. The demand for new medical technologies will only intensify and trade missions, such as our trip to Boston, provide countless opportunities for our innovative companies to win new business."

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