The significant effort into cluster development as a tool for attracting foreign businesses has made Copenhagen one of the most dynamic life science regions in Europe.
Several large companies with R&D in the region like Novo Nordisk, Lundbeck, Leo Pharma and Zealand Pharma have, for a long time, contributed to the development of the Copenhagen region in Denmark into a strong life science hub.
Not only big pharma thrive in the Copenhagen region, though, where companies of all sizes in virtually every branch within the life sciences can be found. Biotech companies, such as DanDrit Biotech, Nordic Vaccine, Acadia Pharmaceuticals, Alkalon and Direct-Haler are established here as well. Home to Novozymes, Chr. Hansen, DuPont/Danisco, CP Kelco and DONG, Copenhagen is also a leading region in industrial biotech; and the medtech cluster, with focus on assisted technology, hearing aids, disposables and diagnostics, is very dynamic.
The significance of developing clusters as tools for attracting foreign businesses to Denmark and Copenhagen has gained Copenhagen Capacity, the official investment agency of the Copenhagen region, the award as one of the most innovative investment promotion agencies in the world.
”Clusters are not all about companies; There need to be a political ambition for promoting the clusters, as well as a good collaboration climate between the businesses and the academic centres, leading research institutions and public organisations. All these facets are present here, facilitating a dynamic life science environment apt for creating medical innovations,” says Sylvie Bove, Senior Investment Manager – Head of Life Science at Copenhagen Capacity.
Copenhagen Capacity is the Copenhagen region’s official organisation for investment promotion, business development and cluster growth. Founded as a non-profit organisation with the mission to grow business capacity, it provides a number of services to foreign companies free of charge. The agency is thoroughly connected in the Danish life science industry and academic environment and is happy to provide assistance to Nordic companies and researchers that are looking to collaborate with innovative companies and universities in Denmark or set up in the region.
EUR 5.8 Billion Hospital Investment
”Nine hospitals will be modernised in Denmark by 2020 and seven will be totally new. Eight of these 16 projects are located in and around Copenhagen. On top of that there will be 22 additional minor projects spread over the country. The total investment amounts to EUR 5.8 billion and is financed by the Danish Government (60%) and Denmark’s five regions (40%). Approx. 20% of the construction cost is reserved for IT, medtech devices and apparatus etc,” Sylvie Bove tells.
Copenhagen Capacity has been asked to investigate the development of a new cluster in the region, focusing on citizen centred care, in Denmark called Welfare Tech. The cluster organisation will focus on facilitating public-private innovation collaboration around digital health solutions, to support care of patients after they leave the hospitals, for example in rehabilitation-, nursing-homes or at home.
”Together with key business partners, Copenhagen Capacity will help creating a platform to facilitate scaling-up and implementation of the many telemedicine pilots ongoing in the Copenhagen region, thus providing a secure and efficient support for delivery of care to citizens in their home setting, enabling citizen empowerment. The dialogue with the region and municipality started 18 months ago, and the new initiative is expected to be launched in November 2014,” says Sylvie Bove.
The structure of the future healthcare system will create a need for new, innovative solutions to out-patient care, creating opportunities for local and international companies in the future.
Apart from great infrastructure and the many business opportunities that the clusters offer, a business setting up in Denmark can take advantage of the flexicurity model, which makes Denmark the most flexible labour market in Scandinavia, without compromising with the security demanded of a modern welfare state.
Joint Region Promoted Abroad
Copenhagen Capacity recognises the importance of collaboration across borders. Being the key actor of Medicon Valley on the Danish side, the agency collaborates with several Scandinavian clusters and investment organisations to promote Scandinavia as a leading North European life science region.
”To sustain and expand the international recognition of Scandinavia as a key life science region in Europe, it is important that companies and researchers continue to collaborate across borders. Maintaining Scandinavia on the international map of leading bio-regions is incredibly important to ensure that our part of Europe can keep attracting foreign businesses, which also adds knowledge and talent to the pool for the benefit of local companies and researchers,” Sylvie Bove concludes.