Breaking Buzz is BIO’s newest blog series that reaches across the globe to bring you an insider’s preview into the hottest international and partnering trends coming to San Diego for the BIO International Convention.
This Medal Wins Partnering Gold
If partnering meetings at the BIO International Convention were a competition, Italfarmaco’s Business Development Manager, Yago Romero Medal, would be among the top contenders, having organized 153 meetings that took place in three and a half days at last year’s Convention in San Francisco. He’s not quite a ringer – this will be his third time participating in BIO’s One-on-One Partnering™ – but he remains the one to watch as he fully intends to increase this year’s meetings by about 25%.
To be fair, he is bringing extra help this year: three colleagues from Italy, Spain and the US will assist to ensure all meetings are met with the same freshness and energy.
Breaking Buzz: What is the most important thing you bring to the Convention?
YRM: Strength! I don’t actually train for BIO because I already exercise for my health, but knowing I can keep up a certain pace as I walk – or rather run – to meetings, keeps my mind focused on what’s important.
I also bring a one-minute presentation to share at the start of each meeting that clearly states what we are looking for and where we are in the process. From there we can determine if our different company’s ideas align.
Breaking Buzz: You mentioned that you’ve already begin searching the BIO One-on-One Partnering system for assets. What specifically is Italfarmaco seeking, and how do you choose who to invite to a meeting?
YRM: We are actively looking to partner with companies with assets in gynecology, urology and CNS. But when you have 1,700 sales representatives on the ground, out of which 1,200 are in the EU, you can target pretty much anything, provided it is in late stage and there is a market opportunity.
Although we prefer late stage assets, in women’s health we are open to partner assets from early Phase II and onwards.
Finding the right distributor is also a key target for us. In fact, one of our team members will focus exclusively in that area.
Breaking Buzz: So are you looking only at European companies?
YRM: No, quite the contrary. Italfarmaco was established in 1938 and remains a private Italian company with main offices in Milan and Spain. However we research, manufacture, and market products throughout Europe, South America, Middle East and North Africa, Asia and the United States. We are global, and are looking for global agencies as partners.
Breaking Buzz: What advice do you have for a company seeking a meeting with Italfarmaco?
YRM: Be specific in the meeting request. Explain me your Unique Selling Point (USP) and your differentiation factors. Be very precise on what you’re offering. That’s a compelling company – one that can clearly state they understand what we’re looking for and are clear about how they can contribute.
Breaking Buzz: When will you start sending meeting requests?
YRM: The race has begun! I plan to take full advantage of being in the same city as so much industry talent.