Israel is the world leader in patents for medical devices, relative to population size, and second in the patenting of biopharm products, including pharmaceuticals and treatments.
Israel is eighth in the number of patents granted in the life-sciences industry, which may be the most amazing statistic of all, given the amount of time and money companies must invest in getting a product or technology tested and patented.
This week, the Israeli biotech industry was having its annual conference, the Biomed Israel 2011 show, sponsored by the Life Sciences Industries Association in Israel (ILSI), a nonprofit organization founded to serve and promote the goals of the Israeli life-sciences industry in the international arena. The show, which is taking place in Tel Aviv and is celebrating its tenth anniversary, has become a can’t-miss affair for top executives of pharmaceutical and medical-technology giants around the world.
So how successful has the Israeli life sciences industry been? Check out the stats: There are currently about 700 active life-sciences companies in Israel; 56 percent of them (396) of them were founded in the last decade.
A quarter of them, 173, were founded only five years ago. Of the rest, 306 were founded before 2001, with the oldest, Teva Pharmaceuticals, founded in 1901 (amazing but true). Out of the 700, 401 (56%) are in the medicaldevices business.
From 2001 to 2005 the industry’s annual growth was 12%. Even though things have slowed a bit over the past three years, Biomed organizing committee chairperson Ruti Alon says growth has returned to the sector.
More than 100 of the companies established over the last decade are making money, she says, and “the most impressive fact is that 25 companies, about 8% of all companies that produce income, were founded only five years ago.”
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