printer icon

BioTech is making a comeback but did biotech companies ever really go away

Many friends and colleagues attended the Aroa Biosurgery (ASX:ARX) listing on the ASX, ceremony and celebration at the end of July. Aroa is a soft-tissue regeneration company, founded in 2008.

“You all know biotechnology is an important part of New Zealand’s future” Peter Hodgson, Research and Science Minister, 19 September 2003.

Imagine if our Government/s had continued backing
their “vision and foresight” as quoted by Peter Hodgson back in 2003, we would be celebrating many more of these companies today.

Where is NZ’s master plan? has been asked of the Research, Science and Innovation Minister. But even with the lack of long-term strategies and plans in New Zealand, we are fortunate, as we have outstanding individuals who have the vision for their company, their technology and their country.

BioTechNZ Annual General Meeting

Last month, we held our annual meeting and I would like to welcome our new executive council members:

  • Andrew Tompkin (Abbvie)
  • David Powell (University of Otago) 
  • Jeremy Jones (Victoria University Wellington) 
  • Iain Hosie (Revolution Fibres) 
  • Imche Fourie (Level Two) 
  • Ollie Crush (Mint Innovation) 
  • Trevor Stuthridge (Agresearch) 
  • Darryl Grauman (AWS)

We have a fantastic skill set across human health, environmental, industrial and agriculture, large corporates, SME and of course government and education.

I would like to thank the departing members of our Establishment Council for their contribution Dr Kimberlee Jordan (UniServices), Brian Watson (Blis Technologies) and Mike Zablocki (Malaghan Institute). They have provided the organisation with invaluable support and advice during the past two years as we now see the hard work pay off with our increasing membership number. Their hard work has established the platform for BioTechNZ to keep growing and provided the much-needed support to the sector.

BioTechNZ Strategic Planning Session

30 September 2020

BiotechNZ has a strong foundation to work from and will be running our first strategy session with the new Executive Council to build on the members’ proposition and create a robust plan for 2021. As this is a key time for biotechnology in New Zealand, we are opening this session to members who are interested in driving the direction of the organisation.

We are working towards holding this event at NZTE in Auckland, however, due to the current uncertainty, it may be via zoom. If you are interested in attending please send your details to

Biotech NZ Networking Events

Due to the uncertainty of COVID, we will run the next event
Building a sustainable and circular bioeconomy – New Zealand’s natural advantages on 25 August via webinar.
Please register now if you’re planning to attend.

MedCan Summit 2020 9 -10 November

We’re looking forward to the MedCan 2020 Summit taking place on 9-10 November 2020. Limited places are still available. Webinars are running up to the event and are open to everyone.

MedCan Webinar-Ask an Expert

New Zealand has a medicinal cannabis scheme to enable the commercial cultivation of cannabis. Excellent. All you need to do now is apply for a licence. SIMPLE? NO.

Date: Wednesday 19 August Time: 3:00pm – 4:00pm

Register here and send your questions to 

We look forward to seeing many of you online soon and are always keen to hear from you

Stay safe,

Zahra Champion
Executive Director

To receive our full newsletter including additional industry updates and information, subscribe now.

BioTechNZ Our aim is to raise awareness and increase the understanding to enable our nation to embrace the best opportunities biotech offers to us daily, helping us live better, healthier and more productive lives.