BioOhio partners with Cleveland Clinic on company attraction, recruitment
For years—13 to be exact—there has been a very compelling reason for emerging cardio-focused companies to put Cleveland on their travel itinerary. That’s how many years the Cleveland Clinic has been recognized as the nation’s top heart care and surgery center by U.S. News & World Report.
Now there’s another reason for cardio companies to travel to Cleveland. And this time, they are more likely to stick around.
The latest attraction is the Global Cardiovascular Innovation Center (GCIC), a $250 million research and product development consortium, led by the Cleveland Clinic. Spurred by $60 million from the state of Ohio (the largest economic development investment via the Third Frontier Project), the center was established to assist companies and commercialize cardiovascular products to improve patient care. A statewide collaborative effort, the center currently comprises 20 medical, academic, economic development and industry partners from around Ohio.
In addition to developing, testing, and commercializing new technologies, GCIC officials also believe the center will be a magnet for existing cardio-related companies. To test the theory, BioOhio and the GCIC recently forged an active partnership focused on attracting companies to Ohio. The partnership also has BioOhio contributing to GCIC goals in formation, expansion and job retention of Ohio cardio-related entities. Team NEO, a joint venture of northeast Ohio chambers of commerce, will also partner in the overall recruitment effort for the GCIC.
The GCIC partners’ five-year goals are to form or recruit 27 companies and to create 850 high-paying jobs, said Mark Low, the medical imaging industry veteran hired late last year as the GCIC’s managing director.
In 2007, five bioscience companies moved to northeast Ohio without any incentive package, demonstrating the strength of the state’s existing infrastructure. The companies had existing relationships with area institutions and assets within Ohio. To date, these moves have resulted in 16 new high-paying jobs.
John F. Lewis Jr., vice president of BioOhio, cited the Cleveland Clinic’s unrivaled reputation and the GCIC’s expert-laden management team as to why BioOhio shook hands on the partnership.
“This is a world-class operation,” said Lewis, who leads BioOhio's attraction and expansion efforts. “We fully expect the GCIC will make Ohio the cardiovascular destination of the world, and BioOhio certainly will promote and leverage it to the fullest.”
BioOhio is in the second year of leading a separate asset-based company attraction project for the state of Ohio targeting relocation or expansion of cardiovascular, imaging, biopharmaceutical and biopolymer related companies.
Estimated at more than $420 billion, cardiovascular medicine is the largest healthcare market opportunity in the U.S. The cardiovascular disease burden poses clear challenges —medical, scientific, and commercial—with enormous benefit accruing to the investigators, entrepreneurs, and companies that can provide innovative, state-of-the-art solutions.
As part of their company attraction and expansion strategy, BioOhio has networked 44 statewide economic development partners, which meet monthly. Recent successes include Amylin Pharmaceuticals building and then expanding its first manufacturing and packaging facility, and Eurand breaking ground on a 13,000 square feet R&D/manufacturing expansion. In both instances, Ohio was chosen out of a highly competitive field of states and countries.
BioOhio’s company attraction function is also linked with, on a less formal basis, the Ohio State University-led Wright Center of Innovation in Biomedical Imaging, the Center for Personalized and Genomic Medicine at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, and Wright State’s Calamityville, among others.