Biotechnology Company

An established North American biotechnology company had developed assay and laboratory automation technologies that enable the early identification of drug safety issues. While the company knew its technology could assist pharmaceutical and bio-technology companies to reduce drug discovery costs significantly, it faced several challenges:

  • The technology was highly specialized, complex, and expensive, reducing the market to a small number of large drug discovery companies. Market saturation would occur quickly.
  • The sales cycle was long and challenging, which led to unstable cash-flows.
  • The company was not well positioned as a credible supplier of complex pharmaceutical products within the European market.
  • With a culture strongly identified with academia, the company lacked business management expertise.

The company engaged FinanceNorth to re-engineer its business model and address the limited scope of its market and stabilize revenues. FinanceNorth developed strategies for penetrating the European market and repositioning the company in this territory.  Finally, FinanceNorth identified and helped recruit several senior business managers to Register the organization.

The Results?

The introduction of a new out-sourced assay and safety screening service accessible to smaller biotech and pharmaceutical companies through a fee-for-service model. FinanceNorth also developed and funded an in-house financing/leasing service to facilitate purchasing of the company’s technology. European market expansion strategies were developed, resulting in operations and sales in France, Germany, and Benelux. These successful and replicable strategies were subsequently utilized to penetrate Asian markets, including Japan, South Korea, and the Philippines. To sustain its long-term growth, senior veterans within the industry were recruited.

Case Study Summary:


The Company The Challenges
An established North American bio-technology company providing assay technologies and services for drug discovery, lab automation and safety screening.

Solutions offered early identification of issues related to drug safety and standardization of lab procedures through automation.

Target market was large pharmaceuticals and bio-technology companies involved in clinical drug development.

Specialized technology was complex and expensive.

Market was limited to large pharmaceutical and biotech companies engaged in drug discovery.

Sales cycle routinely exceeded 18 months.

Distribution channels (and sales) in Europe were limited.

Business management expertise was lacking.

FinanceNorth’s Role The Outcomes
Developed and executed a strategy for expanding sales and marketing in Europe.

Identified new sources of short-term revenue.

Established strategies for increasing accessibility of technology to small / medium-sized pharmaceutical and drug research companies.

Provided capital required to support client purchases and leasing solutions.

Assisted the recruitment of professional management to support long-term growth.

A proven European and Asian expansion strategy was developed and executed.

Sales and marketing operations in France, Germany and Benelux were established.

Sales to the top European pharmaceutical and bio-technology companies increased.

New OEM relationships with providers of non-competitive technologies were established.

An out-sourced assay and safety screening service was introduced to open the SME market.

An in-house financing / leasing service to facilitate purchases of the company’s technology was developed.

New senior business leadership was recruited.