Henry Skinner struggles to hold himself back when discussing current issues with the antibiotics market. As the newly appointed CEO for the antimicrobial resistance research fund AMR Action Fund, being passionate about this area is sort of embedded in his job description.
The fund was established last year by a confederation of some of the world's largest pharmaceutical companies, with Novo Nordisk being one of the major contributors. The underlying purpose is to support the failing antibiotics market, which is generating ever-fewer new drugs.
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In 2015, Genmab partnered with relatively unknown biotech firm Biontech. Reflecting on how far Genmab has come since, CEO Jan van de Winkel is still confident that partnerships, rather than acquisitions, are the way forward. If it had acquired Biontech at the time, the CEO speculates Genmab may have put a stop to other activities – including the Covid-19 vaccine efforts that went on to save millions of lives. This and fairness are worth remembering as biotech firms are increasingly strapped for cash, van de Winkel reflects.