Italian Biotech Industry 2019

This update has been prepared by Assobiotec (National Association for the development of biotechnology – part of Federchimica) in cooperation with ENEA (National Agency for new technologies, energy and sustainable economic development) and provides a brief overview on the biotech sector in Italy in 2019.
The work presents analysis and estimates based on information provided by the firms operating in the sector at the end of 2018, their 2017 financial statements, public data and data from the National Statistical System. The data, collected within the framework of the National Statistical Programme, will feed into the key biotechnology indicators produced by the OECD - Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, whose methodology is adopted in this study.
In a cross-cutting sector such as the biotechnology one, which is not recognisable within the existing industrial classification, the real number of firms is identified thanks to a process of progressive approximation. For this reason, data are continuously revised and the latest figures are provisional. It is likely that, a few months after the end of 2018, some of the newly-established biotech firms have not been identified yet.
During the last 3 years, the total number of biotech firms remained pretty much stable, while the turnover generated by biotech activity grew by 16%, more than double the rate of the manufacturing sector (7%). During the same period of time, the biotech R&D investment increased by 17%, and the biotech employees, nearing the 13,000 units, rose by 15% within the national-owned dedicated biotech R&D firms. The share of small and micro enterprises represents the 78% of the Italian biotech firms and, therefore, the biotech sector shows a higher average company size than the manufacturing sector.
To sum up, the Italian biotech sector continues to grow in all its main economic indicators and to be research-intensive, experiencing a consolidation phase in terms of number of firms. All of this, in spite of the fact that the sector has been waiting for a long time the setting up of a national strategy in favour of medium-long term research and innovation, to unlock its full potential for our country in terms of competitiveness, occupation and well-being.

Download Survey The Italian Biotech Industry Economic Update 2019