BIO International Convention partnering is moving at a record pace

bio convention partnering

With the partnering system to arrange face-to-face meetings at the BIO International Convention filling up at a record pace, anyone who wants to do business in biotech should seriously consider joining the action June 5-8 in Boston.

“We opened the system last week with 65% more participants than at this time last year, and it was really a record-breaking launch overall,” Mackensie Vernetti, Senior Director of Partnering at Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), told a webinar held last week to explain partnering possibilities at the Convention.

The world’s largest gathering of leaders in the biotechnology and life sciences industries, the BIO International Convention brings together thousands of biotechnology and pharmaceutical executives, who share information on the industry and engage in networking that fosters new opportunities and promising partnerships.

In 2018, the BIO International Convention set the Guinness World Record for “Largest Business Partnering Event” with more than 46,000 partnering meetings. Last year, the first post-COVID gathering had a record 14,175 attendees and a near-record 44,000 partnering meetings. After the launch on March 27th, more than 3,000 executives and business development leaders had  already signed up for face-to-face partnering through BIO’s unique One-on-One Partneringтм system, a significant increase over the same period last year.

“The more companies and activity in the partnering system increases the likelihood of finding a potential business fit. It’s one of those cases where more, is more,” said Lisa Magerl, BIO VP of Marketing.

Making meetings easy

BIO’s One-on-One partnering platform makes it easy to pack in loads of 30-minute face-to-face meetings during the four-day convention by scheduling ahead of time, according to Vernetti.

“You’re able to fill out a company profile, set your calendar availability for meetings, and search our database of companies that are also attending and seeking to set up meetings,” she said. “You send meeting requests to potential partners and then BIO schedules the meetings for you, providing on-site meeting locations and times based on mutual availability.”

A new addition to the system is the ability to mark participants as optional on meeting requests, to make scheduling more flexible.

“With this feature, we’re allowing users to prioritize meeting attendance among their team and cut down on instances where a meeting can’t be scheduled due to lack of mutual availability,” Vernetti said. “This will help get people more meetings, especially highly important meetings with large pharmas, whose teams often have full partnering schedules.”

Most meetings will take place in the BIO Business Forum inside the exhibit hall, a space with about 700 meeting booths, where “people are bustling in and out every 25 to 30 minutes,” Vernetti said. Companies with an exhibition space can also hold a meeting at their own private booths.

At last week’s webinar, Vernetti explained that companies who provide a detailed profile in the system are more likely to find the best matches, and added that it is a good idea to get a jump on scheduling meetings through the platform.

“It does pay to start early. Companies that do so often get more meetings and meeting requests are currently up by 150% compared to this time last year,” she said.

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