Biotech park Luckenwalde
Indian biotechnology companies will soon be looking at developing a global footprint. A review of facilities available at Germany’s Berlin-Brandenburg life science cluster, which offers an easy entry to the European market
The capital region Berlin-Brandenburg has Germany’s most important biotechnology cluster with the highest density of universities, research institutes, clinics and more than 170 biotech and pharmaceutical companies, as well as a large potential of outstandingly well trained qualified persons and easy access to the new European Union member states.
Together, they represent a creative and productive environment that has been a consistent breeding ground for successful pharma and biotech start-ups. Several interdisciplinary networks and an outstanding regional infrastructure promote close and efficient cooperation between the fields of science, business and politics. The Berlin-Brandenburg region is even attractive by its favourable residential and commercial rents and a comparatively low cost of living. More than six million people live in this area, thus forming a considerable customer potential and a substantial pool of highly qualified specialists and management personnel.
The federal states of Berlin and Brandenburg actively pursue a wide-ranging policy designed to promote the highest possible level of technological innovation in the region. They gave the money to establish a coordination office for the life science cluster. The agency BioTOP Berlin-Brandenburg is the central contact point for all issues concerning biotechnology in the German capital region. It is its objective to coordinate all regional activities in biotechnology by networking with all key players and to initiate specific projects in order to turn Berlin-Brandenburg into a globally leading industry site as a competence centre for biotechnology.
The Biotechnologypark Luckenwalde is one of the key-components of the Berlin-Brandenburg life science cluster. Located just 50 km south of Berlin in the rural district of Teltow-Flaeming, the park is one of the most modern facilities of its kind in Germany.
Already 40 national and international companies with about 500 employees are located in the park which is a perfect location to set up a new business. It offers work, research and home in direct proximity on its 28 hectare campus-like site. The park provides a branch-specific technology and start-up centre, developed business plots, ready for building on, on favourable terms as well as rental apartments and plots for owner-occupied houses.
The management of the park offers support to companies in the fields of founding consultancy, qualification of business plans, arrangement of financing and sponsorship, look for cooperation partners and contact to authorities. A biotech training centre, the Life Science Academy Luckenwalde, with the external office of Wildau technical college on the campus, covers the long-term for excellently trained and motivated qualified staff. With its own quality management system, Biotechnologypark Luckenwalde is the first park in Germany to provide its central technical services conformant to ISO 9001 and GMP.
The Park is for foreign companies the A1 location to enter the European market. For companies seeking for a cost effective solution to the need for an initial market presence in Germany, Luckenwalde Biotechnologypark is offering a ‘sales office arrangement’ for very attractive cost structure. Foreign companies from US, UK, Austria, Italy, Korea and India have already taken advantage of establishing a branch in Luckenwalde to get easy access to the European market with more than 400 million potential customers and further 400 million East Europeans.
The park offers its tenants fully-equipped laboratories with laboratory benches and cabinets, safety workbench, bench extractor fan, autoclave, automatic cleaner, pure water systems as well as shared facilities such as seminar rooms, kitchenette, solvent storage, ice machine, central waste deposit, cold storage rooms and -80°C freeze cabinets.
Large equipment such a 400 MHz NMR spectrometer, micro and ultra filtration facilities, concurrent centrifuge and a ball mill can be borrowed on favourable terms. State-of-the-art clean rooms (B/C) for the production of pharma products can be rented, and additional requirements can be quickly realised. Biotech orientated symposia such as Biochip workshops with leading research organisation such as Fraunhofer Society and Max-Planck-Foundation, GMP-validation seminars, venture capital (VC) meetings with German and European VC companies are regularly held in the modern communication centre with over 300 seats, restaurant and library.
Berlin and Brandenburg support domestic and foreign biotech companies with a wide-ranging policy of technology and business funding as well as through targeted financial support. Their programs are aimed specifically at enhancing the innovative and competitive strengths of the region. Companies in the life sciences sectors receive priority funding in the form of investment allowances and R&D projects. As target I and target II areas of the EU, the region offers the best funding conditions in Europe. Investments are subsidised with up to 35 percent support for large companies and up to 50 percent for small and mid-sized companies. The region also benefits from support measures from the federal government for the new federal regions.
Brandenburg offers the most attractive incentive grant conditions in Europe and an interesting financing environment:
Joint task for improvement of regional economic structure Contact partner—Investmentbank of Brandenburg
Offers maximum 50 percent non-repayable subsidy for all investment costs in small and medium size companies (without vehicles, industrial property and financing costs).
Product and procedures innovations Contact partner—Economic Develop-ment Board of Brandenburg (ZAB)
Offers maximum 75 percent grant aid of the eligible project costs, but maximum 500.000 Euro for every application in research and development (non-repayable).
INNO-Watt-Program of the Federal Ministry for Economic and Labour of Germany
Offers 45 percent non-repayable subsidy in R&D, including personnel; maximum 375.000 Euro.
Many successful scientific and economic networks have been established in the region over the past several years. Luckenwalde Biotechpark is integrated in an international network (USA, Australia, Russia, Korea, India, and Taiwan) in order to enable worldwide fast, efficient market access and cooperation.
The regional network enables direct access to finance sources and cooperation with renowned research establishments, universities and clinics, help to accelerate the transfer of innovative research results and to promote the quick conversation of these results into marketable products. The Biotechnologypark Luckenwalde will implement the foreign companies in it network (attorneys, notary, tax advisers, cooperation partners and associations) and help the companies to establish a profitable branch in Europe.
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