“American dream” has long been a buzzword in the US. And people from different states have a “California dream” which started from the “gold rush era”. Today, the dream is not only about wealth and money, but more about technology innovation as well as an attitude toward openness and inclusion.
On April 9, 2018, the Yabuli China-US Business Leaders Roundtable was first hosted in San Francisco, the heartland of innovation. Entrepreneurs from China and the US gathered together to exchange thoughts on such topics as technology, innovation, finance and economy, and share stories about innovation and dreams.
Look up and ahead creatively and everything will be fixed
Innovation makes the world develop and human beings progress. For enterprises, the importance of innovation is even more evident. Guo Guangchang, chairman of Fosun International, shared his simple but real thoughts with hundreds of Chinese and US entrepreneurs, VC professionals and other guests.
“I think, aside from talent and capital pooling, people are very tolerant of failure whether in Silicon Valley or across the US. Everyone is very open and willing to cooperate. There is no prejudice against the color of your skin. Regardless of many existing problems, people are looking up and ahead. Because if you look down and back, you will end up whining all the time, and can change nothing at all. However, if you look ahead creatively, everything will be fixed.”
Right opportunity makes dream come true
At the Mega Health Innovation and Globalization forum, Liu Shigao, president and CEO of Henlius, started with talking about the cooperation with Fosun.
“In 2008 when we started our business, we were spotted by Fosun Pharma who financially assisted us and helped us to grow in the financial crisis, and we are always grateful for that.
With the right place, right time and right people, we captured the opportunity presented by the biopharmaceutical industry in China. We’re building a solid foundation step by step and making possible that everyone will be able to afford advanced anticancer biomedicine.”
When classmate Liu Shigao decided to “leave” Amgen, a major US pharmaceutical company, and founded Henlius, he might not quite predict that his aspiration and foresight would coincide with a historic global trend. In China, many cancer patients can’t afford advanced anticancer biomedicine. Under the “Made in China 2025” strategy and the “Belt and Road” initiative, domestic pharmaceutical enterprises are well positioned to combine with global productivity, and biomedical products in line with international standards will be approved in China, the US and Europe, and tested clinically.
Respect for originality and innovation brings Henlius and Fosun together
In China, only 5% of cancer patients have access to try the new anticancer medicine Herceptin. However, due to environmental pollution and changing lifestyle, diseases nowadays tend to be more widespread and life-threatening. The vision of benevolent Henlius and Fosun is to bring more and better biomedical products to China. As Chinese family health expenditure is growing about 10% per annum, Henlius sees huge potential in the consumer market, and hence embraces the dream of benefiting all patients regardless of country, sex, age and background.
Henlius is preparing mAb in its production base
When the 2008 financial crisis hit global industrial financing sector, Liu Shigao’s Henlius was in its infancy. He looked back on how Fosun became a shareholder, and he could still remembered clearly the department store and restaurant where he met the Fosun Pharma team and discussed technological and financing needs. “To be honest, it sort of shocked me that Fosun would recognize and invest in us so quickly.” Classmate Liu admires Fosun’s decision-making speed and courage. However, what impresses him more is that Fosun’s investment team fully respects his and the young team’s profit distribution scheme as well as the company’s vision and mission. Particularly, they almost share the same corporate culture and value, i.e. entrepreneurship and respect for originality and innovation.
Market opportunity + policy support paves the way for dream
Due to aging population, unhealthy lifestyle, environmental pollution and other factors, China has seen its incidence of cancer among the world’s highest. In 2015 alone, there were 4.3 million diagnosed cases, twice as much as in 2000. However, the patients have not yet been provided with the same medical conditions as in the developed countries where cancer patients can try new medicine and test therapies other than chemotherapy. Therefore, huge demand is out there in the future. According to prediction by some consulting agency, the biomedical market will expand to USD 15 billion by 2030, and against such backdrop, commercial success of application will still be achieved.
In the meantime, in order to promptly approve more clinical test proposals, CFDA has been progressively updating China’s GCP rules. In August, 2015, CFDA unveiled a new “Four-Color Lighting Strategy” to help prioritize the clinical tests. Subject to this system, proposals are divided into four categories and sorted out by degree of importance, so that medicine trying to cure serious illnesses such as AIDS and cancers usually can be tracked quickly, and approval will be granted faster.
Reactors from Henlius production base
On November 11, 2015, CFDA issued an evaluation report elaborating four new initiatives and a MAH system which would be first introduced in ten provinces in China. This system allows Chinese manufacturers, R&D organizations and researchers to obtain drug approval even if the products are produced by CMOs. During the examination process, CFDA also revised several definitions applicable in Chinese pharmaceutical industry, including “new drug”. Currently, these drugs are limited to those that have been never approved or sold elsewhere in the world. This will facilitate mAb products to be approved and widely applied in Chinese and American market.
Fosun pursues the Chinese dream by continuous innovation
“We believe that cancer will become a chronic disease in the future,” Guo said. As a company dedicated to technical innovation and operational excellence, apart from its investment in Henlius, Fosun has also invested in Kite Pharma, a leading CAR-T cancer therapy specialist in the Silicon Valley, and built global strategic partnership with Intuitive Surgical, a high-tech firm committed to developing robotic-assisted technologies. Meanwhile, in the past two years, Fosun has invested in ViewRay, a real-time MRI-guided radiation therapy system manufacturer.
Henlius has established a large pharmaceutical production base in Songjiang, Shanghai. Fosun has set up a China joint venture with Kite Pharma. Intuitive’s surgical robots have been applied in United Family Healthcare hospitals to assist complicated surgeries. From 2017 to date, Fosun has increased its stake in ViewRay, manufacturer of MRIdian Linac system, to 18.4%, and will further drive the R&D and commercialization of MRIdian linear accelerator. MRIdian Linac’s real-time MR image-guided radiation therapy system has set the new care standard for radiation oncology, making ViewRay a benchmark enterprise in the industry. Besides, ViewRay MRIdian Co60 is the only real-time MRI-guided radiation therapy system triple accredited by FDA, CE and CFDA, and put into commercial operation.
“In my opinion, innovation and inclusion is vital to success in the Silicon Valley. Always look up and ahead. In fact, over the past more than 200 years, it is such future-oriented spirit of innovation that helps create today’s United States since the first immigrants settled in New York and the country was founded. In the business world, this spirit is reflected as entrepreneurship. It is fair to say that Fosun’s globalization story is basically about the Chinese dream coming true. But at the same time, it’s also highly similar to the Silicon Valley story and the American dream. In the heart of Silicon Valley, we’ve started to bring global patients our premium innovative health resources to realize the dream of overall wellbeing. Looking ahead, we will keep going while remaining true to our commitment.”
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