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Beginner’s Guide on Starting a Biotech Business in Singapore
The seeds of the biomedical sector were planted in the 1980s in Singapore when the government began investing heavily in pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical technology capabilities. These early commitments are now bearing fruit, with several biomedical companies founded in Singapore making inroads on the global stage. So, what are you waiting for? Grab this opportunity in starting a biotech business in Singapore! There are a few things you need to know for company registration in Singapore.
Biotech Businesses and What They Do
Biotechnology is the technology that utilizes biological systems, living organisms, or even products of a living creature such as their bacteria or enzymes to manufacture and develop a different product. A few examples of the application of biotechnology in our lives are nutrient supplementation, producing antibiotics, or even certain medications. You may ask what the difference between a biotech business and a pharmaceutical business is? The difference is biotech uses living organisms to create their products while pharmaceutical business uses only chemicals and generally artificial materials to create a certain product.
Why Start a Biotech Business?
If you are unsure if starting a biotech business in Singapore is the way to go. Allow me to share some information that will spark your interest in this industry. If you are interested in starting a biotech business, Singapore is the right place. Why did you ask?
Singapore is currently one of the world’s most developed economies, as well as one of the most innovative countries in terms of research and development, both of which are critical for this rapidly growing industry. Besides that, Singapore is the preferred place for enterprises to research and develop new goods. These better fulfill Asia’s healthcare demands since it is a major biomedical science cluster in the heart of Asia.
In addition to that, in Singapore, you have the Biopolis, the country’s first-ever co-working space for biotech start-ups. This area is used as international research and development center for various biomedical sciences. It also encourages collaboration between private and public scientific communities. Biopolis is known as a Singapore-based incubator that provides lab space, equipment, cash, and even assistance to small biotech firms. This coworking space’s assistance and facilities are already having a positive impact on the region’s scientific community. Another plus point is that biotech businesses in Singapore can receive corporate tax exemptions for their first year of existence. Hooked already? That’s the way! Let me guide you on starting a biotech business in Singapore.
Starting a Biotech Business in Singapore
The First Step Is to Make Absolutely Sure That the Idea Has a True Market Need
There are a lot of biotech-related issues and yet to be perfected biotech processes in our daily life pending to be resolved, waiting for potential biotech entrepreneurs to take up the challenge. These are high potential business opportunities for start-up biotech entrepreneurs because you don’t have extra modification or variation costs to change the current processes as you are starting anew! It is understood that many of our dear entrepreneurs out there have so many ideas to address the above. By working on these ideas, you can be sure to be able to tap on the existing market with a new perspective, thus creating a blue ocean.
To protect your goose that lays the golden egg, you have to make sure that the technology that you are interested in is protected by intellectual property (IP). To get your IP for your product, there are three ways in Singapore which are: a patent, copyright, or a trademark. After that, secure the assets, IP rights, and commitments from the investors and key personnel.
Step 2, Identify Founders and Key Personnel
We should all carefully identify the potential individuals and understand their interest and commitment to the future organization. Besides that, you should also determine the percentage ownership each individual will own to avoid future conflicts. This is better decided beforehand as you would not want a shareholder to receive identical equity ownership, which will not be working with the new business yet keeps a secure position while receiving high returns every month.
Step 3, Finding a Good Attorney
This person plays a very critical role in your biotech business. They should preferably be a key partner. This person will be the one that you go for advice, guidance, and counsel in all legal matters. They will assist you in navigating corporate and business challenges at all phases of your company’s development and growth. Your attorney has to be able to advise you on compliance with the law while you optimize profit. You will have this person’s phone number memorized within the first week of establishing your business. That is how important this person will be in your company, so choose someone you can trust and work well with.
Step 4, Incorporate Your Company as a Corporation Once You Have Investor Interest
Your next step in opening a biotech business is to raise money or secure a federal small business innovative research grant. Besides that, you should incorporate your company as this will allow you to avoid paying exorbitant fees when you issue founders’ stock. The reason for the fees is because the value of the company at this stage is extremely low.
Step 5 Is to Conceive Well-planned Marketing and Business Strategy
As all of you know, starting a business in Singapore will require capital. So that is where this step comes in. A well-written business plan will help you raise money. This is because your business plan describes, in detail, the needs of society along with how your product is the solution to this. It will also explain the numbers which your potential investors will be more interested in. In addition to that, this is the time where you also explain your future plans like what you plan to do with the money, what are the returns and exit for an investor.
When developing a business plan, including your attorney as they can help you transform it into a fundraising document. A comprehensive business plan which has, among others, your strategic product development, effective marketing approaches together with a realistic cash flow will help you convince investors. When the business plan is ready, you will then hold a meeting with the interested investor groups. Legal things included! You could also hire an SG corporate service provider to help you with all this.
Step 6, an Optional Step! You Can Try to Operate It as a Virtual Company First
Instead of actually setting up a company then discovering your business plan does not work, it would be good to simulate your business plan virtually with a group of potential partners in the form of role-playing. This may not give you the actuals of the real-life experience but will help you find loopholes and potential pitfalls in your business plan, especially in your development or business processes. It wouldn’t hurt to get those documents revised and improved before finalizing your business plan for securing funding.
Step 7, Advancing Your Technology Consistently as Your Product Develops With Time
Throughout the whole product development process, make sure to highlight the major value-increasing product development milestones. Then, for the first milestones, show continuous growth by fulfilling these estimates. Investors enjoy hearing about organizations that are making steady progress along a predetermined development path.
There it is, a step-by-step process to open your biotech business! Remember to register your biotech business under the Singapore Trade Register. If you need assistance, 3E Accounting offers company incorporation services in SG.
The biotech industry has so many undiscovered possibilities, and starting a business can get complex. Though daunting, our company formation specialists can assist you with the incorporation of your company. If you are considering venturing into the biotech industry in Singapore as a corporate service provider in Singapore, contact us, and we will try our utmost to ensure everything goes smoothly for you!