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Easing Budgets and Advocating for Members

Posted By Administration, Thursday, November 21, 2019
Updated: Thursday, November 21, 2019

Members and Friends,

Happy Holidays!

As we begin to ease ourselves into the holiday season, and as we busy ourselves with our Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping plans all the while trying to stay on budget, Virginia Bio would like to remind you of the ways membership saves our companies major money! Virginia Bio is a BIO Business Solutions® (BBS) Affiliate, the largest cost savings purchasing program for the biotech industry operated by the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO). With more than $400 million in annual sales, BBS aggregates the purchasing power of over 3,000 North American biotech companies. BBS offers members the opportunity to save on items they need to run a successful biotechnology enterprise - from lab products, business insurance, office supplies, shipping needs, and much more. Participating Virginia Bio members save from $5000 up to $300,000 per year with BBS, and saved more than $4.3 Million in 2018 utilizing this savings program! Click here for more details about the vendors available under this program and how you can maximize your own savings.

Virginia Bio Advocacy for the Industry
We have recently lent the voice of Virginia Bio to two very important issues affecting many of our members.

Virginia General Assembly’s Joint Commission on Healthcare Takes No Action on Drug Pricing Recommendations. You will recall that on September 25, Virginia Bio submitted comments on several policy proposals being considered by the Virginia General Assembly to, among other things: implement Virginia state government drug affordability board and upper pay limits, ban pay-to-delay agreements, and develop a program to import drugs from Canada. (You can see our letter, here). On November 14, the Joint Commission announced that it will take no action on any of the policy proposals it was considering. While this is positive news, we will monitor this issue throughout the 2020 General Assembly session and beyond.

U.S. House of Representatives: Lower Drug Costs Now Act (H.R. 3)
Many of you have been following this piece of legislation, which would make sweeping changes to our larger private health care system by granting the government authority to set medicine prices in public and private markets that will have a detrimental impact on future medical innovation. Virginia Bio joined the Virginia Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Richmond Urban Collective and the Virginia Asian Chamber of Commerce on an October 17 PhRMA We Work for Health letter to each member of the Virginia Congressional Delegation advocating against HR3 and international reference pricing for drugs. By example, you can see the letter addressed to Senator Mark Warner, here. The bill has passed out of the three committees having jurisdiction, and it is expected that the full House will consider the bill by the end of this month.

Gubernatorial Recognition of Cavion and Andrew Krouse
. On November 12, Governor Northam hosted a Leadership of Virginia’s Technology Research and Commercialization Reception at the Governor’s Mansion in Richmond. In attendance were myself, Board members Jim Powers (CEO, HemoShear Therapeutics), Elaine Horn-Ranney (CEO, Tympanogen), Rony Thomas (CEO, LifeNet Health), and keynote speaker Andrew Krouse, immediate past Board Chairman and CEO of recently-acquired Cavion, Inc. Andrew represented all of the companies then present who were being recognized for having competed for and received investment from the Commonwealth, and he described the growth of his company from a startup in his garage to being acquired by Jazz Pharmaceuticals for a total potential consideration of $312.5 million.

Upcoming Events. We look forward to seeing you at our next Virginia Bioscience Commercialization Luncheon in Richmond, December 12, featuring FUJIFILM Wako Chemicals U.S.A. President David Alwood, LAL Sales Specialist Jonathan Vaughn and Technical Specialist LaToya Mayfield. FUJIFILM Wako has long been recognized as a world-renowned supplier and continues to maintain a culture of product quality through the establishment Limulus Amebocyte Lysate for detection of gram negative bacterial endotoxins. Come learn about the corporation and how this unusual extract from the horseshoe crab can become a vital part of quality control for pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and much more!

On December 10 Virginia Bio, the Charlottesville Business Innovation Council and the UVA Licensing & Ventures Group will jointly host a Holiday Party, open to our entire life science community. The party will be held in Charlottesville at UVA L&VG, 722 Preston Avenue #107, 5:00 - 8:00 pm and will be a festive celebration with colleagues, delicious food and spirits. Join us if you can!

JPM 2020 is Here! Yes, we are still excited to again bring the Virginia Reception back to the San Francisco Clift Hotel’s Velvet Room on January 12, 2020 to kick off the 38th J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference. The JPM Healthcare Conference is the largest healthcare investment symposium in the industry, bringing together industry leaders, emerging fast-growth companies, innovative technology creators, and members of the investment community. Attendance at JPM 2020 is limited (and hotel rooms even more so!), so please be sure to mark your calendars, make your hotel reservations, and be on the lookout for more information from Virginia Bio regarding meeting room reservations!

Your Ideas. Virginia Bio wants to hear from you! Please do not wait for the occasion of my visit with you to provide feedback; send us your ideas, comments, suggestions and advice regarding how Virginia Bio can best support you and our biotechnology ecosystem. Contact us at

Happy Thanksgiving, and Kindest regards,


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