Hosted by Korea Health Industry Development Institute (President Kwon Soon-man) and Chungcheongbuk-do (Governor Lee Si-jong) and sponsored by the Ministry of Health and Welfare, BIO KOREA 2021 was held June 9-11 in COEX Seoul. In its 16th run this year, BIO KOREA has introduced the technological level of Korea’s pharmaceutical and bio industries to the world.
This year, the emphasis was on collaboration with global institutions and companies. BIO KOREA 2021 examined innovative changes in technology and directions in the biohealth industry in response to the new normal era. Unlike last year’s BIO KOREA 2020, which was held online due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s event was successfully held in a hybrid format with conferences, exhibitions, business forums, investment fairs, and job fair programs simultaneously held online and offline.
The ultimate goal of the “Post-BIO KOREA special event, ‘Post Bio Korea Special: Grasps the business opportunity between Korea and Australia” is to promote collaboration opportunities between the two countries and investment in the Australian market.
The Australian Trade and Investment Commission of the Australian Embassy in Korea participated in BIO KOREA 2021 and introduced 28 Australian companies representing a wide range of capabilities in the bio field to the Korean market. A non-face-to-face interview was conducted with an official from one of those companies, Australia’s major chemical product manufacturer Epichem.
Q1. What kind of company is Epichem?
Epichem provides specialty products and technologies to customers in the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, materials science, mining, agricultural, and animal health sectors. With a newly established state-of-the-art laboratory, Epichem has world-class equipment and expertise to support drug discovery projects and perform high-efficiency synthesis of drug analogue libraries and intermediates.
Also, at a time when pharmaceutical reference standards are rapidly increasing, Epichem has expanded its chemical capabilities and expertise to apply materials science applications to energy, resources, waste, recycling, and AgTech fields. Based on this, Epichem has received many awards, including the West Australia Industry Export Award for international health and welfare in 2019, and Australian Export and Investment Award and GHP Biotechnology Award in 2020 for amazing recovery despite the COVID-19 pandemic and most innovative chemical service, respectively.
Q2. Were there any overseas business issues after BIO KOREA 2021, such as the possibility of cooperation with overseas companies and the development of relationships?
Through this BIO KOREA 2021 exhibition, Epichem had a number of new business opportunities and saw results. The exhibition was followed by initial meetings and we had discussions on projects, and a new customer participated in our medical and synthetic chemical products and services. Five leads were generated through BIO KOREA’s partnering platform, and four of them have even gone through a meeting to discuss Epichem’s products and services.
Q3. The Australian government is providing support to the biohealth industry, including direct investment in health and medical research and providing R&D support programs. As a company, what do you find attractive about partnering and expanding business with Australia?
Epichem has been working closely with the Australian Trade and Investment Commission, and we were able to have meetings with a number of Korean companies and secure potential customers. Especially, thanks to the support from the Australian Trade and Investment Commission, we were able to easily and quickly introduce our capabilities, expertise, and standard material manufacturing to potential customers overseas.
Q4. Is there is an issue regarding business revitalization between Korea and Australia?
The Korean government is continuing support and promotion in the life sciences sector, and many Korean institutions have already incorporated, or are considering to incorporate in Australia to take advantage of the R&D Tax Initiative benefits provided by the Australian Government.
Epichem is a highly regarded partner for Korean bio companies in terms of products and services, helping to accelerate the commercialization of technology, protecting intellectual property rights for customers, and ensuring that customers do not repeat unnecessary tasks.
Q5. Lastly, what would you like to say to the Korean companies?
We welcome continued collaborations and partnerships with Korean pharmaceutical and biotech companies. We are continuing to implement growth and commercialization strategies to bring more novel, innovative and groundbreaking products to the market for patients around the world, and we look forward to sharing our success with Korean companies.
The Australian Trade and Investment Commission of the Australian Embassy in Korea provides various services for Australian companies to successfully enter overseas markets through a global network. It is also engaging in activities to attract foreign direct investment to Australia and overseas marketing of the Australian education sector. It is in charge of helping cooperation with Australian companies when needed.