Alberta BioIndustry projects revenues to jump 400 percent in next three years


    A BioAlberta and KPMG study forecasts major employment increase

    EDMONTON, Oct. 16 /CNW/ - The bio sector in Alberta is expected to grow
significantly - according to a joint survey presented today by BioAlberta and
KPMG LLP.
    The industry survey, BioIndustry in Alberta: State of the Industry 2007,
reports that respondents to the study project industry revenue to increase by
more than 400 percent within four years, from $814 million CAD in 2006 to an
estimated $3.6 billion by 2010. The increase is expected to fuel the demand
for employees, adding an estimated 1,200 jobs to total 5,983 positions (a
20 percent increase) in the industry by 2010.
    Jonathan Kallner, Partner and National Industry Leader, KPMG LLP, and
Ryan Radke, President of BioAlberta, presented the findings in Edmonton this
morning at an Alberta bioindustry breakfast to industry executives. The
survey, distributed to more than 130 companies in the biotech, bioproducts,
and bioinformatics business in the spring of 2007, provides a review of the
state of this industry in the province, examining revenue growth, research and
development, human resources, and sources of funding and capital.
    "We've made significant investments in research in Alberta that are
starting to pay off in the form of a high growth, high margin, and high
value-added knowledge based industry," says Ryan Radke, President of
BioAlberta. "However, we need to protect the investment we've made by
supporting the industry with a policy framework that will bring more private
sector investment, facilitate innovation and commercialization, accelerate
research and development, and perhaps most importantly, attract and retain a
skilled workforce in a province where labour challenges are an ongoing
concern."
    Along with this bullish outlook, the report flags several critical issues
facing Alberta biotechnology companies in the coming years. These include
attracting skilled employees, expanding within North America, and securing
additional investment and financing.
    "This joint initiative is very important to understanding future
opportunities in Alberta," says Jonathan Kallner, Partner and National
Industry Leader at KPMG LLP. "As Alberta's knowledge-based economy continues
to grow, reports such as this will allow us to measure and benchmark the
growing bioindustry on a national and global level."
    Respondents also listed potential initiatives that could positively
impact the growth of their company. Examples include Scientific Research and
Experimental Development tax credits, additional funding for commercialization
and marketing programs.

    About KPMG in Canada
    ---------------------
    KPMG LLP is the Canadian member firm of KPMG, a global network of
professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. We operate in
148 countries and have 113,000 people working in member firms around the
world.
    The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG
International, a Swiss cooperative. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and
separate entity, and describes itself as such.

    About BioAlberta
    -----------------
    BioAlberta is the central voice and the organizing hub for the
bioindustry in Alberta.
    BioAlberta is a private, not-for-profit industry association,
representing Alberta's growing bioindustry. BioAlberta currently lists over
130 members, including producers, users, and supporters of biotechnology
activities in Alberta.

    BioAlberta activities are focused in the following areas:-   Government advocacy

    -   Industry promotion

    -   Increasing industry access to financing

    -   Facilitating access to human resources

    -   Business development and networking opportunitiesAlberta's bioindustry is a broad field of endeavour encompassing
biotechnology, environmental science, medical technology, industrial
bioproducts, agriculture biotechnology, bio-informatics, and natural health
products.
    BioAlberta is a member of the BiotechAccord, which includes other
bioindustry development organizations, as well as the national bioindustry
organization, BIOTECHCanada
    For more information, please visit www.bioalberta.com.




For further information: For interviews and more information on this
study: Rachel Thexton, Media Profile, (604) 729-1448, rachel@mediaprofile.com