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Bright future for Life Sciences

The amalgamation of Medilink East and West Midlands has been given the seal of approval in a move which will serve the best interests of the life sciences sector in the Midlands.

This unification, that sees Medilink East and West Midlands operate under a single group company, Medilink Midlands, was unanimously endorsed, in principle, by the boards of both organisations and is the culmination of a strategic alignment that has been developing over the last six years.

Medilink East and West Midlands have both established comprehensive local connections, and under Medilink Midlands will have a combined network of over 8,000 contacts within the Life Sciences sector. This includes the NHS and key universities, along with the many businesses that operate in the sector, ranging from innovative start-ups, right through to multi-nationals such as 3M, Walgreens Boots Alliance, The Binding Site, Quotient Sciences, Kimal and Salts Healthcare.

The two organisations first began working together in 2014 with the initiation of a Midlands-wide skills programme. Since then a number of other collaborative programmes have been established to help grow the sector in areas as diverse as personalised medicine, digital health, defence medicine, inward investment and international trade.

There is an on-going transatlantic collaboration between the Midlands and the City of Mentor, Ohio in the USA, that has resulted in four trans-Atlantic trade missions, providing a valuable foothold for Midlands companies looking to operate in the American market and creating a means for further overseas investment in the Midlands, enhancing the Midlands' reputation as a high-performing, high-calibre region.

This amalgamation will serve to further utilise the skills, knowledge and expertise resident within the region and will provide a more connected focus on influencing Midlands-wide and national initiatives, whilst maintaining the established sub-regional activity that delivers training, business and innovation support, market access, R&D collaboration and networking opportunities. The advent of the Midlands Engine and moves to rebalancing the UK economy will also bring greater regional collaboration opportunities that Medilink Midlands will be ideally placed to capitalise on.

Keith Widdowson, chair of Medilink East Midlands, said: “This move to bring the two organisations together fulfils a real need in the life sciences market. With the rich history and track record of innovative life science companies across the East and West Midlands, combined with the strength of depth in the supply chain, the future partnership and growth opportunities for our companies will drive the Midlands forwards to ever greater heights.”

Prof Martin Levermore DL, chair of Medilink West Midlands, added: “This is an opportune time to formally bring together the East and West Midlands life science community. The East and West Midlands complement each other wonderfully and there is a clear and logical connection between the two regions.

"As Medilink Midlands, we will strive to ensure that what is great in our region is raised to the highest stage and what is already good will be helped by us to become even better giving a pan regional delivery for all Medilink members.”

Medilink Midlands will be holding a number of online events throughout the summer with the first one on Tuesday, July 7, in which the City of Mentor will speak on how Ohio has responded to the Coronavirus pandemic and what lessons can be learnt for the continued collaboration with the Midlands Life Science sector.

To find out more about Medilink Midlands and book onto next Tuesday’s event visit: https://www.medilinkmidlands.co.uk/event/medilink-midlands-virtual-coffee-break-members-only/

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