An Updated Strategy for a Fast Growing sector

The new 2017 Life Sciences Strategy for Scotland – 2025 vision will be launched tonight at the Life Sciences Dinner and Awards by Dave Tudor, VP of Primary Supply Chain at GSK, Industry Chair of Life Sciences Scotland, the life sciences industry leadership group (ILG).

The strategy sets priorities to support the ambition of growing the industrial turnover of the life sciences sector to £8 billion by 2025.

While very ambitious this target is achievable as shown by the impressive expansion of the sector since 2010. The latest sector figures (2014 data), show that the sector employs over 37,000 people across some 700 organisations. Company turnover is in excess of £4.2 billion and gross value added (GVA) around £2 billion. Between 2010 and 2014 company turnover increased by 29%, gross value added by 24% and total employment in companies by 13%.

Scotland is already a leading global life sciences cluster and in the past few years Scotland has seen many positive developments, with a number of international companies looking to expand their presence here. Approximately £300m has been invested over the past three years across the sector, by companies including Capsugel, GSK, Johnson  Matthey, Piramal Healthcare, Quotient and ThermoFisher Scientific.

In the last two years, Scotland has attracted significant international investment through acquisition. Nikon bought medical technology company Optos, which will become the cornerstone of its new medical group. Biopta was acquired by Reprocell, a Japanese stem cell specialist. Medical technology giant Medtronic purchased anaesthesia specialist Aircraft Medical; Merck bought IOmet Pharma; French specialist Sartorius Stedim acquired BioOutsource, and Icelandic prosthetics specialist Ossϋr acquired Touch Bionics.

Also, a number of new companies have located in Scotland, including Cellexus, Dexcom and Janssen Pharmaceuticals, HCi Viocare, Orion Health, Sinovet and Greengage, proving just how attractive Scotland is as a place to invest – and a great location to build and grow a life sciences business.

Scotland has also enhanced its investment offering in recent years, leading to Epidarex establishing a £50m Venture Fund, a £50m venture fund supported by a diverse range of investors, including Eli Lilly’s first venture fund investment within the UK. With 30 per cent of its portfolio in Life Sciences, the Scottish Investment Bank (SIB) is one of the most active investor in Life Sciences in the UK. The Scottish Investment Bank has invested £39 million in the sector over the last 5 years, leveraging £98.6 million in private funds which has been a great stimulus to the sector.

Our next steps are for the development and delivery of action plans to implement this strategy. Working groups will be formed with the Life Sciences Scotland Industry Leadership Group and members of the broader life sciences community to plan and coordinate the delivery of agreed actions under each strategic priority.

The journey continues, and we invite you to join us.

To find out more about the strategy, see a video of Dave Tudor, Industry Chair of Life Sciences Scotland, introducing it and download the strategy document please go to: