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From Kendall Square to Union Square 

2023 JP Morgan Health Care Conference reflections with Michal Preminger, Head of Innovation, East North America

Q: What is the significance of JPM? JPM brings together a 360 degree senior decision maker level representation of the players in healthcare: biotech of all stages, pharma, public market investors, VCs, healthcare systems, academics, regulatory and government funding agencies, etc. The meeting is usually an important venue for major M&A, partnering deal and data readout announcements and sets the tone for the investment and deal making dynamics for the rest of the year. Multiple events are open to anyone (e.g. @Wuxi Global Forum), connections (planned or serendipitously) made at JPM are long lasting, and the exposure to trends and opportunities offers unique cross fertilization to help shape an individual organizations’ strategies for the longer term.

Q: What was unique about JPM this year?  This year’s JPM was a celebratory post-COVID and first in-person reunion for our sector, which, since the last in-person JPM in 2020, has gone through an explosively bullish period and has since been experiencing significant headwinds from multiple fronts. Despite those headwinds, JPM was dominated by a strong spirit of optimism, passion and conviction by companies and leaders to carry on and bring innovation to patients, supported by truly exciting breakthroughs in science and solid progress in product development led by mature and experience leadership teams.  It was impossible not to be impressed by the resilience of this community!

Q: How was KSq represented at JPM?  As the most innovative biotech hub in the world, KSq was represented by a multitude of individual companies, investors, industry and academic groups that brought cutting edge science and new impactful products to JPM. Our local thought leaders were uniquely prolific in producing, sharing and amplifying content on social media, making the JPM experience accessible to broad audiences who were not able to attend in person (examples: @biotech Hangout @Flagship Pioneering Studios @Stat @endpoints etc).

Q: What did you enjoy the most about JPM?  It’s a tough choice – I really had an amazing week. As a science and innovation nerd, hearing about the next wave of science for patients is hard to beat.  As a bit of a social butterfly, I always enjoy and love reconnecting with friends and making new ones at receptions and events (including #MassBio reception and the #biotech hangout #Tweetup), and my experience on the United Airline “charter flight/party bus” from Kendall Square and SF Union Square as another highlight. Finally, since I came well equipped, I didn’t even mind running around in the rain and wind and jumping through the puddles.

If you’re curious to hear more about JPM week, tune into the MassBio JPM Recap recording here.