by Gemma Escarré,
A cohesive, active and growing ecosystem. These were the words heard most yesterday in informal conversations among the nearly 300 entrepreneurs and professionals from the biomedicine, innovative medical technology and health arena at the CataloniaBio & HealthTech summer networking barbecue (#BBQ2018).
#BBQ2018 was organised for the first time by the new association created just five months ago, through the merger of CataloniaBio and Health Tech Cluster. The event, at the Specipig facilities, demonstrated more than ever the diversity of the start-ups, companies and organisations in the sector in Catalonia. "This diversity, far from being a weakness, gives us the chance to cover the whole value chain of innovative solutions to allow us to improve everyone's health," explained Jaume Amat, president of CataloniaBio & HealthTech and CEO of Specipig.
CataloniaBio & HealthTech currently has more than 150 members and has taken advantage of the good dynamic of the two associations that preceded it to press forward, sure that innovation, entrepreneurship and networking are key elements to promote the development of new healthcare solutions. "We have a highly unique virtuous circle, which doesn't happen in other sectors, and all the ingredients to grow together and make a noteworthy place for ourselves on the international scene. In 2017, we raised €102 million and participated in 146 collaborative projects," remarked Amat.
In addition to the networking, participants got to watch chef Luis Ruiz-Ávila and the team from Spherium Biomed cooking the lamb and the Argentinian Choripán while they explained that "what we are doing is just a local version of a Greek hecatomb, a sort of ritual sacrifice."
And just a few kilometres away, Barcelona Tech City was celebrating two years of Pier 01 as the city's digital and technology hub.