watkins-human-genome

GlaxoSmithKline PLC has removed all of the executive officers of Human Genome Sciences Inc. as part of its $3.6 billion acquisition of the Rockville-based biotech, including President and CEO Tom Watkins.

GlaxoSmithKline PLC has removed all of the executive officers of Human Genome Sciences Inc. as part of its $3.6 billion acquisition of the Rockville-based biotech, including President and CEO Tom Watkins, according to a securities filing on Monday.

Whether Glaxo would keep the local company's management in place was the subject of great speculation after the buyout was announced earlier this month. Watkins, who had helmed the Maryland drugmaker since 2004, has been replaced by Deirdre Connelly, GSK's president of North America Pharmaceuticals.

scheer-partners

Scheer Partners Inc. and The JBG Cos. are reviving a $100 million real estate fund they established in 2008 to invest in life science properties.

Rockville-based Scheer, a broker for biotech and medical real estate, and the Chevy Chase developer had set up the Greater Washington Life Sciences Fund just as the recession kicked into gear. After buying one 53,000-square-foot property at 21 Firstfield Road in Gaithersburg, the partnership essentially went into hibernation.

Bohealth innovations

County Executive Ike Leggett (center) and Councilmembers Nancy Floreen (second from right) and Hans Riemer (right) visited BioHealth Innovation's Open House on July 23. BioHealth Innovation (BHI) was established as a public-private partnership to accelerate the technology transfer and commercialization of biohealth research in the Central Maryland region. At the event were BHI Chairman Scott Carmer (left) and CEO Rich Bendis (second from left).

I was happy to help celebrate the opening of the BioHealth Innovation’s new headquarters at the historic Wire Hardware Building in Rockville. BHI was established as a public-private partnership to accelerate the technology transfer and commercialization of biohealth research in Maryland, and that’s a great thing for Montgomery County. Congratulations BHI. We're glad to have you in Rockville.

-Nancy Floreen, Montgomery County Council Member

Maryland

Technology job openings surged by 8.2% in June, according to job-search site SimplyHired, but some places remain better than others if you’re looking for a tech job. The site's top and bottom five contain a few surprises.

SimplyHired bases its ranking on the number of tech job openings compared to the number of people who are working in the region. The numbers below are based on metropolitan areas as defined by the U.S. census bureau.

1. Baltimore, Maryland (46,150 people employed, 14,093 tech job openings): Hunter Sherman, the chief engineer at Sparks, Maryland-based BizBrag, Inc., said the company is struggling to find qualified people to fill its jobs. As a result, BizBrag is planning to move. “A big part of our issue is that we're just north of the city, and a majority of the engineers are located to the south, closer to the D.C. area,” Sherman said. “This is one of the major reasons that we plan on moving our business into the city in the coming months.”

Md bio enterprise

Admit it. You enjoy working in science, but weren’t always captivated by how it was taught. You aren't alone. Studies show that when students lose interest in science coursework the problem is often how science is taught - not science itself. Teachers lack the interesting curriculum and adequate support needed to provide engaging and intriguing coursework. The lack of interest among science students leaves them disinterested, bored, and unprepared to meet the challenges of a technology-driven future.

These findings have real-world consequences. Despite the heroic efforts of talented U.S. science teachers, many of our brightest young students migrate away from the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) career paths that could power America's 21st century competitiveness.

Biotechs

If you’ve recently asked yourself, or someone standing next to you, “Where are all the biotech jobs?” it’s a good thing you’re reading this now.

While surveying for our latest annual Top 25 List of biotechnology companies in the Baltimore area, I asked each company whether they’re hiring any time soon, and all of these below said yes:

nvca-yearbook-2012.png

The 2012 NVCA Yearbook includes a comprehensive analysis of U.S. venture capital industry statistics. The main source of data for this publication is ThomsonONE.com, the online research database of Thomson Reuters. ThomsonONE.com  is endorsed by the NVCA as the official United States venture capital activity database. The publication includes metrics regarding commitments made to venture capital funds, venture capital investments into entrepreneurial companies, and venture-backed exits (mergers and acquisitions and IPOs). The publication also includes appendices regarding portfolio company valuation guidelines, international accounting convergence and venture capital activity outside the United States.

biofactura-screen

Noble Life Sciences, Inc., a preclinical drug development contract research organization (CRO), announced a partnership with BioFactura, Inc. (Rockville, MD), a developer and provider of proprietary technologies and services for production of biologicals.

The collaboration expands Noble’s CRO services to include the development and production of monoclonal antibody and other protein-based drugs. Through the partnership, Noble becomes the exclusive commercial contract services provider of BioFactura’s technologies and capabilities.

davidmott

Chevy Chase-based New Enterprise Associates has closed on what appears to be the largest venture fund in history at $2.6 billion, the firm announced Wednesday.

NEA’s 14th fund gives the VC titan a fresh pool of capital to inject into tech companies along a wide array of stages, sectors and geographies, and comes two and a half years after the firm closed on a thirteenth fund that was only slightly less mammoth. NEA is among the most prolific startup funders in the D.C. region, both in biotech and information technology.

etc-baltimore

How time flies.

Just last year, many of us in the Baltimore technology community were talking about whether our city needed an accelerator program. The Emerging Technology Center, with the help of the Abell Foundation, stepped up and provided one.

The first class of four companies graduate tomorrow. And one of the graduates, NoBadGift.com, is moving out to San Francisco for three months to be a part of the NewMe accelerator program. Great news for that team of three entrepreneurs.

leggett-bhi-opening

Yesterday it was a pleasure to attend the BioHealth Innovation Inc. (BHI) open house at the historic Wire Hardware Building in Rockville to celebrate the opening of the organization’s new headquarters. At the Open House, BHI President & CEO Rich Bendis welcomed guests and introduced Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett who talked about the important role of BHI and this industry – not just for the county, but for the entire state of Maryland.

Johns Hopkins University

Could a low-cost screening device connected to a cell phone save thousands of women and children from anemia-related deaths and disabilities?

That’s the goal of Johns Hopkins biomedical engineering undergraduates who’ve developed a noninvasive way to identify women with this dangerous blood disorder in developing nations. The device, HemoGlobe, is designed to convert the existing cell phones of health workers into a “prick-free” system for detecting and reporting anemia at the community level.

Qiagen

QIAGEN N.V. announced results of operations for the second quarter and first half of 2012, delivering a solid performance and making significant progress on strategic initiatives to drive innovation and growth. QIAGEN also raised the outlook for full-year net sales and adjusted EPS targets and announced a program to repurchase up to $100 million of its shares.

In the second quarter of 2012, net sales grew 9% (+14% at constant exchange rates, or CER) to $307.2 million from the same period in 2011, as all customer classes, particularly Molecular Diagnostics and Applied Testing, and all regions recorded growth. Adjusted operating income rose 10% to $86.4 million, as the adjusted operating income margin was steady at 28% of net sales. Adjusted diluted earnings per share (EPS) grew to $0.25 from $0.23 in the 2011 quarter.

Congress

Companion bills were introduced in Congress on April 25th of this year with little fanfare (particularly in comparison to the Leahy-Smith American Invents Act) but they have the potential to provide significant funding for university-related start-up companies.  The bills, H.R. 4720 and S. 2369, are entitled the "America Innovates Act of 2012" and are sponsored by Reps. Rush Holt (D-NJ) and Timothy Bishop (D-NY) in the House of Representatives and Sens. Frank Lautenberg, Jerrod Brown (D-OH), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) in the Senate.  They have been referred to their respective committees (the House Sub-Committee on Technology and Innovation and the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation), but to be frank it is unlikely that they will receive positive action in this election year.

bhi-location

BioHealth Innovation, Inc. (BHI), a regional private-public partnership focusing on commercializing market-relevant biohealth innovations and increasing access to early-stage funding in Central Maryland, has located its corporate headquarters in the Wire Hardware Building at 22 Baltimore Road in Rockville.

BHI also announced the creation of two new staff positions filled by recent hires Ethan Byler as Director of Innovation Programs and Amanda Wilson as Operations Manager.