ANZAC spirit to flourish with biotech agreement

28 Sep 2004

The ANZAC spirit of the Australian and New Zealand biotech industries has been boosted with the arrival of one of New Zealand's premier agricultural scientists at IMBcom, The University of Queensland`s commercialisation company for the Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB). 

Dr Warren Parker, until recently Chief Operating Officer with NZ`s AgResearch an independent Crown-owned research and development company protecting intellectual property and commercialising New Zealand research, will commence his 12-month secondment today. 

IMBcom CEO Dr Peter Isdale said Dr Parker`s secondment offered many benefits to the New Zealand, Australian and Queensland biotechnology industries, as well as IMBcom. 

"Established through the Office of Queensland's Chief Scientist, the appointment will benefit IMBcom and AgResearch, particularly in light of the establishment of the Australia New Zealand Biotechnology Partnership Fund," Dr Isdale said. 

"We can look forward to the development of a collaborative strategic plan identifying areas of competitive strengths, developing strategies to achieve critical mass, directing government policy to attract the best people and capital, as well as facilitating partnership formation on both sides of the Tasman.

"By comparing and contrasting IMBcom with AgResearch`s commercialisation activities we hope to further improve our commercialisation activities, while at the same time developing new industry networks," he said. 

Dr Parker has a long and distinguished career in New Zealand's agricultural industry occupying several key positions with AgResearch including Science General Manager and most recently Chief Operating Officer. He was also a Professor at New Zealand's largest agricultural University, Massey. 

AgResearch Group`s 2002 gross revenue was NZ132.2 m, with a net surplus after tax of NZ$4.2m and an equity return of 4.9 percent. Employing almost 1,000 staff AgResearch achieves full commercial potential through Celentis and a number of other subsidiary and associate companies and joint ventures.

IMBcom is the value-adding innovation carrier for the ideas of the IMB. IMBcom protects the discoveries of IMB researchers, builds alliances with organisations to promote them, and develops partnerships with investors who help grow them into platforms for new enterprises.