Press Release for our 2015 Winter Conference held in Flims from 1st-3rd Feb, 2015.

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

February 16th 2015, Vevey – The Swiss HLG, a not-for-profit association of senior healthcare business development and licensing professionals ’s  21st Winter Conference took place in the charming Hotel Waldhaus in Flims from February 1-3, 2015. The conference topic was Diversification vs Focus Within the Healthcare Industry: Trends, Challenges & Opportunities.

With the looming Euro / Swiss currency situation, we were prepared for the worst but happily, we report that the winter conference was a success, with an increase in participation over 2014, and with over 90 attendees from 10 countries- Switzerland, Germany, Great Britain, France, Italy, Austria, Macedonia, USA, Poland and Finland. As per previous years, around 50% were loyal attendees, enjoying our full program of educational and networking opportunities.

Over the last decades, healthcare industry stakeholders have gone through cycles of diversification and /or focus. Our distinguished speakers were tasked to discuss their companies and their strategy in handling trends in diversification versus focus within the Health Care Industry and how business development professionals need to be prepared how deal structures may require adaptation.

Marco Gadola, CEO Straumann, our opening keynote speaker gave us a glimpse into the challenges faced and the swift, brave actions taken in diversifying into close adjacencies to turnaround Straumann in a competitive environment in the dental implant field.  Tony Rosenburg, our closing keynote speaker gave us a fascinating insight into his journey in closing the Google lens deal with Novartis, another diversification yet in familiar ophthalmology grounds with a culturally very different innovation partner, forcing us a new look into what’s important and what’s less important in the deal.

Luca Bolliger provided a view through the Recordati’s family business lens while Jukka Muhonen spoke about how a mid-sized company, Orion Corporation worked this model. Riccardo Carbuccichio, managing director of Valeant is used to all sorts of deals from hungry parent and discussed the empowerment  at the market levels, whilst Brian Debuitler, CEO, PGT  Healthcare made it clear how vocabulary may actually confuse rather than build. From the Corporate VC lens on healthcare industry evolution, Markus Goebel discussed the emerging trends and pointed out herd mentality, nothing new in our industry. Sharon Finch, CEO, Medius shared the ever busy deals that supports diversification via multiple partnerships and Alan Selby from Torreya Insights demonstrated that the money is of course in the US – whether diversifying or focusing.

The SwissHLG introduced the Good Partnering Practices Initiative through the talking tables. There was excitement on the professional exchange of experience and the good practices to be fostered in healthcare industry partnering in the future. These valuable contributions will be used  for the creation of the Swiss Good Partnering Practices, put together from the output of the Talking tables  in the course of the year 2015. The 5 SCENIC tables included Chapters on 1) SCouting and Prospecting, 2) Evaluation and Due Diligence , 3) Negotiation and Execution, 4) Integration & Alliance Management and 5) Conflict Resolution and Termination, each lead by a Swiss HLG Board member.

The 21st Winter conference was a resounding success and the feedback we received was overwhelmingly gratifying. I thank the Conference Director, Zaki Sellam and  the entire Board who worked hard to make this conference a success, as well as the sponsors, without whom we could not have staged this valuable event, and all the members and participants, without whom we would have no reason to work this hard.

I look forward to seeing you at our summer event in Lugano on the 7th and 8th of May 2015

Yours sincerely,

Kim Bill


Swiss HLG