A world-leading biopharma cluster

The Netherlands is the fourth best biopharma cluster in Europe, according to a new ranking. The annual European ranking by Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN) rates biopharma clusters based on a number of factors, including public research funding, venture capital, patents, number of companies and job figures. GEN attributed the Netherlands’ high position to several factors. These include the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) move to Amsterdam, as well as the country’s high number of biopharma jobs (65,400), grants (2772), patents (178 granted and 497 applications in 2017) and VC (€97 million, according to Invest Europe).

Excellent infrastructure for research and innovation

The ranking system defines biopharma clusters as ‘communities’ of biotechs, pharmaceutical employers, universities and independent research institutions. Though the Netherlands was in the top five for almost all of the ranking’s individual criteria, it ranked only seventh for the number of companies, with a total of 499 according to figures from the Holland BIO’s Dutch Life Science Database. It is likely that number will increase with the EMA’s move to Amsterdam next year.

EMA office

Photo: A mock-up of EMA's new Amsterdam headquarters

The United Kingdom remains Europe’s top biotech cluster, with Germany second and France third. Some countries narrowly missed inclusion in this year’s list despite top 10 rankings in venture capital: Ireland ranked seventh with €80.15 million and Austria eighth with €69.61 million. 

A leading force in life sciences and health

The Amsterdam Area is home to many academic hospitals, respected universities and specialised research institutes. Life sciences companies in the region enjoy superb access to innovative technologies, clinical trials, biobanks and centres of expertise. Amsterdam Science Park – one of Europe’s largest concentrations of high-level scientific education and research – brings business, science and innovation together, while amsterdam inbusiness plays a major role in connecting corporates, universities, research institutes and talent in the sector.

Read more about Amsterdam’s business rankings.