Over at Forbes' Medicine Show blog, Matthew Herper is searching for people in biotech who have become billionaires, and he has only found a few. Patrick Soon-Shiong is worth $5.2 billion; Randal Kirk is worth $2.2 billion; and Michael Jaharis has $1.9 billion, all according to Forbes' lists of billionaires and the richest Americans. While those sound like fortunes, Herper points out that they pale in comparison to entrepreneurs in computer science and information technology sectors like Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg. "Health care in general is a pretty bad choice of a sector if you want to make a mega-fortune," he says. Part of the problem, he adds, is the time and money it takes to develop new drugs. "As we think about how to invent medicines — and we should think about it, because otherwise we may stop inventing new drugs entirely — we should consider how to make innovators incredibly, dramatically, stunningly wealthy," Herper says.
A Plea for Billionaires
Mar 30, 2011