BioPharm International is about to embark on another new beginning. You'll remember the magazine (along with the primers, supplements and media kit) had a drastic new beginning in February of 2004 when we launched the major redesign. There were other new beginnings in the past two and one-half years, like five new columns (StreetTalk, Operations Excellence, BioPartnerships, Compliance Briefing and Final Word.) You'll even see a sixth column about legal issues in 2006.
Idon't have many colleagues who react with joy when management announces strategic planning meetings. Do you? After all, it means hours, nay days, of discussion and debate while your day-to-day obligations lag woefully behind.
Hurricane Katrina is slamming into the Gulf Coast of the US at the moment, with wind gusts of up to 140 mph. As many as 10,000 residents of New Orleans, LA have taken shelter in the city's Superdome, while others obeyed the mandatory evacuation order and fled to safer ground earlier.
Shortly after London's ordeals, I heard of a new piece of intelligence suggesting that a large pharmaceutical company is on a short list of possible Al Kaeida targets. Since I'm sure all pharmaceutical facilities are securely buttoned up, I wonder more about our industry as a whole becoming a focus of attack by these maniacal extremists.
Reading about the sophisticated advances in biotechnology is now a common, enlightening occurrence. But the field certainly has taken its lumps over the past three decades, creating doubts in the minds of investors and periodically striking fear in the hearts of the public. Take the late-night sci-fi thriller I awoke to one evening, where an army of diseased and highly intelligent rats was infiltrating a stalled subway car filled with terrified passengers. Of course, the animals were sick, smart, and reproducing offspring with similar attributes because of an experiment-gone-awry in a biotech lab — they'd been treated with some kind of therapeutic grown in a rare plant — which was now abandoned after its occupants received one too many warning letters from "a regulatory agency." THAT woke me up real fast.
Despite the ringing of two stray cell phones disrupting the quiet, all eyes and ears were glued, almost reverently, on New York City's former Mayor Rudy Guiliani at INTERPHEX when he presented the day's keynote address. First, he thanked the audience for providing the therapeutic options that allowed him to successfully defeat prostate cancer awhile back. Next came his imitation of James Gandolfini in the hit TV show "The Sopranos," as he reminisced about his duties as NYC's former chief prosecutor. Once he had our full attention, close to 1,000 of us, he shared what he felt are the most valuable leadership attributes and how they will successfully get you through challenging and uncertain times.
You don't really care what people say about you (the biopharm industry) behind your back, do you? According to a recent survey of 670 BioPharm International subscribers, conducted by Derek Ellison from Eden BioDesign, some of you care very much about the public's perception of the industry.
This was the week for awards. The Academy Awards, which honored the film industry, captured the eye of millions worldwide. They were followed midweek by The Fourth Annual Top 25 Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) Marketers of the Year Awards. Sponsored by USA TODAY and DTC Perspectives magazine, these awards celebrated the accomplishments of 2004's most talented DTC pharmaceutical marketers.