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France 2nd in the world?
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France 2nd in the world?

24.05.2012 - France Biotech has presented its 2011 biotech survey together with France Biotech. The results are very favorable for the country.

Paris – The data of the Life Science Panorama 2010/11 survey provided by Ernst & Young claim a leading role for French biotechnology in the world. The accounting specialist has found an impressive number of 1,359 life science companies that are active in France, ranking the country 2nd in the world in terms of the number of such companies. However, the survey gives no clear criteria for the selection of the firms included. Other studies use clearly defined and internationally comparable criteria defined by the OECD. Furthermore, Ernst & Young only surveyed only about 200 companies. 103 firms responded. On this basis, Ernst & Young calculated annual revenues of €261 million in France. In comparison, a report from biotechnologie.de conform to OECD criteria found 552 biotech companies in Germany with €2.4bn in sales. As in Europe, the amount of private equity available for biotechs dropped sharply in France between 2010 and 2011 from €460m to €277m according to Ernst & Young, while the number of start ups founded balanced the number of companies liquidated (24 versus 25). However, the lack of private money could be largely compensated by state programmes such as the FSI-PME programme.  France also expanded its product pipeline. According to the report, 320 therapeutic products were in development whilst 20 were already being marketed in 2011. On top of that, diagnostic companies sold 59 in-vitro diagnostics and 21 in-vivo diagnostics. 

According to the report, the first foreign acquisitions by French companies took place in 2011. Swedish Cellartis AB was bought by Paris-based Cellectis S.A. and SC World Inc. from Japan by Vivalis SA (Nantes). In return, two French companies were acquired by foreign enterprises, namely Novagali Pharma S.A. (Évry) by Santen Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. (Japan) and Ipsogen SA (Marseille) by Qiagen N.V. (Netherlands). 

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