Throughout the summer of 2015, AZBio has been reaching out to the community, sharing what’s happening, and most of all… Listening.
How did you spend your summer season? The team at AZBio ramped up our outreach this summer with three primary goals in mind:
- Spread the word on the amazing work being done across the Arizona Biotech, Medtech, and Healthcare Community.
- Help AZBio Members and future members get more from the resources AZBio and our community have to offer.
- Listen and learn how we can provide the support and service our biotech community needs.
Face to face meetings took place here at home and at conferences from coast-to-coast. Hundreds of phone calls were made to companies here in Arizona to ask questions and listen to the answers. (Didn’t get called yet? Just click here to schedule your interview.)
Here’s the Top Ten List of what we learned from listening to YOU.
- The most common comment heard at least once in every conversation … “I never knew about that.”
- Many people who are AZBio Members, do not know it. DYK – AZBio Membership extends to every employee at an AZBio Member Company. You can help to spread the word by sharing your IN THE LOOP with co-workers and by suggesting they subscribe here so that they are connected too.
- You are curious about each other. AZBio Members want to learn more about each other and how they can work better together. A great way to get to know each other is at AZBio Events and by a quick scan of the latest news on IN THE LOOP.
- Money matters. The lack of investment in early stage companies is holding our young companies back or slowing down their growth. (This is not unique to Arizona, but is especially difficult here.) That’s why AZBio is hosting the White Hat Investor Conference in 2016, partners with national investor conferences for registration discounts, and often has representatives on nominating and selection panels for the conferences.
- Hat’s off to our Angel Groups. Arizona’s first & largest Angel Investor organization, Tuscon’s Desert Angels™, ranked as the third most active angel group in the nation after investing more than $6.8 million in 32 companies in 2014, according to “ The Halo Report.” In addition the Arizona Technology Investors and VA Angels provide opportunity to connect to capital. It’s a start but it is not enough to get us where we need to be. That’s why AZBio is working with the Arizona Bioscience Board (ABB) where statewide leaders are working together to fill the fuel tanks for our biotech industry engine so our companies can move forward faster.
- We are under utilizing our AZBio Purchasing Power Programs. While AZBio Members saved over $1.3M off of list prices in 2014 by using these programs, we could easily double that number. AZBio Purchasing Power programs help our members make their precious resources take them farther. AZBio needs to provide members with better tools to help them save more money on the products and services they use. Stay tuned for more tools coming your way.
- Our students are our future. Without a strong talent pipeline, new companies won’t come here and it is harder for our current companies to grow. That’s why AZBio will continue to focus on initiatives to support internship programs for students and their teachers, bring students and industry together at the AZBio Expo in the spring and the AZBio Awards in the fall, and explore new ways to ensure that Arizona develops and keeps the talent it needs to grow our industry.
- Work with others. There is an old African saying: “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” AZBio is working with our elected leaders at home and in Washington D.C., with chambers of commerce, economic development agencies, and other state, regional, and national industry groups on initiatives to address key issues and raise awareness. AZBio understands that separately we will each compete to grasp for “low hanging fruit” but together we can accomplish more. Watch for more partnerships in 2015 and beyond.
- People outside of Arizona see us as one state. Arizonans may associate themselves as Phoenicians or Tucsonans; Sun Devils or Wildcats but to outsiders looking in, we are all Arizonans and Arizona’s reputation matters…. a lot.
- Just “preaching to the choir” won’t get the job done. Sharing stories of the great things happening in our state with each other is important. Spreading the word to people who do not know as much about us is a strategic imperative. Your stories are inspiring. The more stories that we share, the more people that will be inspired to learn more about our industry and what your team is doing.
It’s been said that “knowledge is power.” Helping people learn more about the amazing things happening in our community is not just AZBio’s job. It’s something that all of us must do if we are going to continue our rise to the top tier of bioscience states. We’ll be spreading the word on how our industry is making life better and we hope you will too.