BioAsia 2023 will see participants from 50 countries

Shakthi M Nagappan,  CEO, BioAsia

Shakthi M Nagappan, CEO, BioAsia


The 20th edition will be held on a grand scale in Hyd during Feb 24-26, says Shakthi M Nagappan, CEO, BioAsia

BioAsia, the marquee healthcare and Lifesciences event, organised by the Government of Telangana, is born with a vision to enhance, enrich and encourage newer innovations, path-breaking discoveries and effective solutions in the biotechnology industry by offering a vibrant global platform for convergence of the key stakeholders. BioAsia is a dynamic platform for companies to exhibit, launch and showcase their unique strengths, products, and services. On a larger level, BioAsia is working to drive a global transformation from the treatment of illness to wellness. In an exclusive interview with The Hans India, Shakthi M Nagappan, CEO of BioAsia and Director of Lifesciences & Pharma, Government of Telangana spoke about highlights of the 20th edition.


How is BioAsia growing each year as a global forum for biotech, pharma, and healthcare sectors?

BioAsia is a cross-sectional forum and is a gateway for people from the Life Sciences, Biotechnology, Pharma, MedTech and Healthtech communities to come together, connect and contribute on a larger scale. Since our inception twenty years ago, we have seen a constant rise in the number of distinguished, world-class participants from more than 50 countries.

At its 20th edition, BioAsia has now established itself as Asia's largest life science conference, thanks to the polished record and reputation we have gained over the years. In the previous editions, BioAsia provided the Indian Pharma community with a platform for more than 20,000 B2B, B2R, and R2R meetings through our global delegates.

The event has provided the Indian pharma community with a pathway to participate with luminaries from 95+ countries, sign 250+ Letters of Intent, Bilateral Cooperation Agreements, and MoUs, share 30+ knowledge papers and policy recommendations and witness a rise in Trade and Investment to upwards of $2.5 to 3 billion.

How many international speakers will take part in the event? From how many countries, the delegates and visitors will attend this year?

BioAsia 2023 will have delegates and participants from more than 50 countries across the globe. Asia's largest life-sciences and healthcare forum will witness the participation of more than 60 renowned and influential global leaders.

This impressive list includes eminent global leaders like Dr Vas (Vasanth) Narasimhan, CEO, Novartis, Switzerland; Prof Robert Langer, Professor at MIT And Co-Founder, Moderna Inc, USA; Dr Sumbul Desai, VP Health, Apple USA; Dr Richard Hatchett, CEO, CEPI (Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations), UK; Dr Mark Abdoo, Assistant Commissioner for Global Policy and Strategy, USA FDA; and Dr Samit Hirawat, Executive Vice President, Chief Medical Officer, Global Drug Development, Bristol Myers, Squibb.

Who are the bigwigs attending the conference this year? What is the overall number of expected footfalls? Will it be more than that of the previous editions?

The 20th edition of BioAsia will feature prominent government dignitaries, industry leaders, researchers, and entrepreneurs, among others. Since our inception twenty years ago, we have seen a constant rise in the number of distinguished, world-class participants from more than 50 countries. This year, being a physical event we are expecting 3,000 to 4,000 participants.

The list includes bigwigs like Ajay Piramal, Chairman, Piramal Group; Satish Reddy, Chairman Dr Reddy's Laboratories; Dilip Shanghvi, Managing Director, Sun Pharma; Dr Sangitha Reddy, Joint Managing Director of Apollo Hospitals (India); Mahima Datla, Managing Director, Biological E limited; Glenn Saldanha, Chairman and Managing Director, Glenmark Pharmaceuticals; Sanjiv Navangul, MD and CEO Bharat Serums and Vaccines Ltd; Manni Kantipudi, CEO, Aragen Life Sciences; Krishna Kanumuri, CEO, Sai Life Sciences and Dr Gagagandeep Kang, Virologist and Professor, Department of Gastrointestinal Sciences, CMC Vellore. The registration process is still going on and we are expecting encouraging participation in this edition too like earlier.

What are the measures being taken by the organizing team to prevent spread of Covid-19?

Various reports suggest that pandemic levels have dropped from a previous couple of years. As BioAsia will be returning to its physical format after a two-year break, we are very excited and the same enthusiasm is reflected in the discussions we are having with partners, speakers, and delegates.

Nevertheless, keeping into consideration the basic Covid-19 protocol norms we are arranging for body temperature scanners at the entrance of the venue. Sanitizers will also be placed at multiple locations at the event venue. We would request the delegate to follow the regular protocols, like keeping a safe distance, using face masks and sanitising their hands.

Participants may also be required to show their vaccination certificates to the authorities if required.

How about the virtual participation of the event? Do you see any challenges this year?

BioAsia's 18th and 19th editions were organised in virtual mode and were a grand success. Since the world has opened up to physical events this year, the 20th edition will be a physical event. As a result, this offers stakeholders in the lifesciences an opportunity to leverage their own time by engaging in meaningful discussions with others and leveraging synergies.

Post the event, some of the sessions will be available on our social media handles and website. These can be watched by those who couldn't join us in person.

Will there be a separate pavilion for startups this year also? How the startups will be benefitted from this event?

Over the years, BioAsia has had startups as an integral part of the event, and a dedicated platform called "Startup Stage" was also introduced in its 17th edition. This provides a unique opportunity for the most promising startups across India to interact with industry leaders, academia, and investors worldwide.

ASt the exhibition, about 100 shortlisted startups will be showcased at this edition as well and the top startups will also get podium time at the event.

What are the major highlights of BioAsia 2023?

BioAsia is in its 20th year now and has gained significant stature and prestige over the years, establishing itself as Asia's largest life sciences conference. The event has immensely benefitted from its participant history including the likes of several Nobel Prize winners, Lasker awardees, Pulitzer Prize winners and eminent global leaders.

The list includes Bill Gates (Chair, Gates Foundation), Satya Nadella (CEO, Microsoft), Alex Gorsky (Executive Chairman, J&J), Dr Vas Narasimhan (CEO, Novartis), among others. It attracts more than 2,000 global leaders from more than 50 countries every year.

Befitting the success of the event over the years, the 20th event is being planned on a grand scale in Hyderabad during February 24-26, 2023 with the theme of "Advancing for ONE: Shaping the next generation of humanised healthcare".

The event will feature insightful sessions and discussions on disruptive technologies in healthcare, the accessibility and affordability of healthcare for all, supply chain constraints with the current geopolitical uncertainties, R&D, and technology, among others.

Over the course of the three days, prominent industry leaders, distinguished scientists, researchers, and entrepreneurs will come together to discuss humanizing healthcare and will hold constructive discussions on how cross-sectional ecosystems can be integrated, how disruptive technologies can be best utilised, and how we can drive quality healthcare with accessibility and affordability at the forefront in the near future.

Are you planning to make any big announcements at the event, especially in terms of new launches or investments?

During its 20-year history, the conference has been instrumental in thousands of business meetings and the signing of MoUs for collaborations, knowledge sharing, and green field project launches. These meetings have led to strategic business deals, making Telangana the life sciences capital of the world.

We are confident that BioAsia will continue to be the platform for a variety of key partnerships and investments in this edition. This year, the Government of Telangana has partnered with the Department of Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) with the objective to promote the MSME Sector.

This annual flagship event will bring key awareness to MSME organisations across the State and will showcase India as a global life science destination. A dedicated MSME Pavilion will be installed at the tradeshow with 60 companies from the MSME Sector covering medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and allied industries.

(This is the eighth article of WTC Shamshabad- BioAsia 2023 Series, a collaborative effort of World Trade Center - Shamshabad and BioAsia, Asia's largest life-sciences and healthcare forum, to highlight the achievements and accelerate growth in the Life Sciences industry)

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