Maryland and UK Sign Two New Partnerships to Grow Life Science Businesses

June 11, 2019

Last week two new partnerships were formed between Maryland and the United Kingdom. Biohealth Innovation, a MD based public-private nonprofit focused on accelerating commercialization for biohealth, will be collaborating with Catalyze, an Amsterdam based company dedicated to bringing non-dilutive funding for biomedical innovations.

Another alliance was formed across the pond at the 2019 BIO International Convention in Philadelphia as Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly M. Schulz and Sir John Peace, chairman of the Midlands Engine, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). These new partnerships speak to the collaborative approach Maryland is taking to continue to grow its life sciences industry and expand growth opportunities for the hundreds of Maryland-based companies.

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The MoU is a mutually beneficial agreement that will help bring investors to the table to help life science companies in Maryland and the Midlands thrive. This new union seeks to promote economic growth for both economies through opportunities like an exchange program that will be implemented by the two countries. Life science companies from Maryland and the Midlands will visit the other country to seek opportunities for expansion into the local market. One such trade mission already took place this past March with participation by eleven life science companies.

“Today’s agreement with Midlands Engine will strengthen our respective life sciences sectors, and spur economic growth in both the UK and Maryland,” said Secretary Schulz. This three-year agreement commences many new opportunities for Maryland’s biohealth ecosystem. Late last week 10 UK companies from the Midlands region visited Maryland to meet with local companies, health care systems, and educational institutions for potential partnership.

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The Biohealth Innovation and Catalyze partnership is intended to bridge the gap between the UK and Maryland to combine their motivation and resources. The shared knowledge between these two organizations will bring innovative solutions to market faster by providing grant writing services, expanding technology commercialization, and international soft-landing support.
Maryland has been a destination of choice for foreign biotech companies for a number of reasons, including the close proximity major organizations like the NIH, FDA and CMS. Additionally, the central geography allows convenient access to four major airports and is less than a two hour flight to many major cities on the eastern seaboard of the US. Just last year, UK-based Autolus Therapeutics, a clinical-stage T Cell therapy company, announced it would be opening its US HQ and Commercial Manufacturing center here in Maryland.  This new partnership with the Midlands Engine will make it increasingly more enticing for more international companies to follow suit.

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