Why Dozens of Biotechs are Moving to Maryland Each Year

June 4th, 2019

Whether you’re starting a business, relocating one, or just moving to live and work, there are endless reasons for why Maryland is the top state to relocate to. The BioHealth Capital Region continues to climb the GEN’s annual ranking of the nation’s top biopharma clusters, and was ranked fourth in 2018. There are many factors that make Maryland a great place to headquarter your BioHealth company. Biotech and life science companies are high-risk high expense ventures, and the location of your company is key to its success.

Maryland has become the destination of choice for many new and expanding Biohealth companies, especially in the cell and gene therapy field. In 2018 Kite, a Gilead Company, and Autolus expanded to Maryland to build commercial cell therapy manufacturing centers. The state attracts dozens of development through commercial stage biotechs each year, many of whom are based overseas and have chosen Maryland as their US HQ.

Maryland’s startup and business ecosystem offers many advantages that you might not find elsewhere, without the expensive price tag on rent. Rent for life science companies averaged $24.35 per sq. ft. in Maryland, compared to $47.39 in San Francisco and $49.61 in Boston.  In Montgomery County they even have a grant program to help startups fund their wet lab space. The region is home to a robust biohealth incubator and accelerator network, that now includes JLABS, to help young companies launch with the greatest chance of success. The region is backed by a business support infrastructure, which includes groups such as BioHealth Innovation, Maryland Life Sciences and TEDCO. All of these organizations work together across the state to provide emerging companies and their leaders the resources they need to grow and prosper.

There are several BioHealth hubs within Maryland that offer abundant resources and connectivity for your company including Frederick, Montgomery County, and Baltimore city. These cities are full of diverse culture with a transportation infrastructure that gives your company easy access to the rest of the US and world. Maryland is served by four international airports and two of the largest rapid transit systems in the US. Being conveniently located just two hours from New York, neighbors to Washington D.C., and a quick plane ride to Boston and Atlanta makes business trips easier than ever.

Maryland’s economy relies on several key industries like agribusiness, manufacturing, cybersecurity, financial services, aerospace, and BioHealth to provide jobs and help its communities thrive. Maryland is also rich with business opportunities through programs that invest in the growth of its companies. Opportunities like business tax credits, workforce training programs, and $16B in R&D funding have attracted some of the fastest growing companies in the US to set up shop in Maryland.

With 60 federal agencies, and over 70 federal research labs in the area, Maryland companies are continuously tapped for contracts and partnerships. These agencies offer Small Business Technology Transfer and Small Innovation Research (SBIR) grants to help generate seed capital for their endeavors. In Montgomery County, they also offer a SBIR matching program program unlike any other in the country. Many local resources like the Department of Commerce’s BioHealth Investment Incentive Tax Credit, TEDCO’s Diverse Investment Funding Programs, and the Maryland Stem Cell Research Fund support the community mission to grow and support local BoHeath companies.

These programs have helped life science companies in the area secure substantial amounts of funding for their technologies.  According to the JLL report, MD life sciences companies and private equity firms have raised more than $418M in venture capital funding, and grew by over 700% over the last year.

Initiatives like life science advisory board foster the collaboration of the state, academic community, the private sector, and federal partners to ensure the BioHealth ecosystem continues to grow and thrive. The Maryland talent pipeline is fueled by award winning public school systems and graduates from prestigious schools like Johns Hopkins University, University of Maryland, University of Maryland Baltimore County, and the Naval Academy. Programs like Baltimore BioWorks, a vocational training program, also feed qualified technicians into the workforce.

Whether you’re moving for the business opportunities, the diverse culture, or the school systems, Maryland has what you’re looking for!

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Alexis Taylor

Alexis Taylor

Alexis Taylor is the Science & Biotechnology Writer for BioBuzz, the Scientific Copywriter for Workforce Genetics and a Baltimore native. Alexis' content delivers the latest complex scientific ideas and concepts in a simple yet interesting way. Since graduating from North Carolina State University with a BS in Microbiology, she has worked in a variety of healthcare sectors including clinical research, biomanufacturing, regulatory compliance and has earned the Executive Certificate in Health Care Leadership and Management from the Johns Hopkins University Carey Business School.

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