Lately, the investment community has singled out the bioinformatics sector as a safe bet — a haven of almost-certain growth in the otherwise risky IT playing field. This budding investor interest has brought with it an accompaniment of services: increased analyst coverage, focused market reports, and dedicated legal practices have sprung up around the promise of the growing sector. But the latest entry to this bioinformatics service industry, the Adrenaline Group, said it doesn’t plan to cater solely to the investor side of the equation.
Adrenaline recently joined forces with biomedical investment consulting firm BioMedical Sciences Group (BMSG), to launch a due diligence service targeted to investors as well as bioinformatics vendors and end-users. Adrenaline, which currently performs internal technology audits and technical due diligence for its clients in the mainstream IT market, hopes to marry its technology experience with the biological experience of BMSG to offer an objective third-party assessment of both the technology and science of new bioinformatics initiatives.
“Bioinformatics companies need to compete in the market on the basis of their software products,” said Greg DuPertiuis, co-founder and president of Adrenaline. “That’s not a big leap from what we’ve been doing traditionally for early-stage technology startups or other corporations looking to commercialize software products or services.”
Barbara Zadina, vice president of marketing at Adrenaline, said that while due diligence is a known entity to investors and more established technology firms, most bioinformatics companies haven’t yet recognized the potential value of such a service. However, she said, companies considering merging with or acquiring a bioinformatics company or end-users interested in determining which bioinformatics tools best meet their needs would benefit from the type of analysis the Adrenaline/BMSG due diligence teams will deliver.
“We feel we’ve filled a gap in the market,” said Zadina. “Many firms that perform due diligence aren’t technologists or scientists. I don’t know of any other firms combining the two.”
Citing a recent market report from IDC that forecast the bioscience IT market to reach $11.5 billion by 2004, Zadina was confident that services such as due diligence would play a progressively larger role in the emerging market.
Adrenaline currently has four staff members dedicated to its bioinformatics efforts, but Zadina said the company plans to draw from its entire employee base of over 45 as the bioinformatics portion of its business grows. BMSG has over 300 medical and life science consultants on call. BMSG’s investigators will evaluate the scientific validity of the emerging product or service, its likelihood of market acceptance, and the regulatory and policy aspects of the technology, while Adrenaline will confirm the soundness of the company’s technology, development practices, and organization.
Adrenaline is in discussions with a number of potential clients for the new service. While the bulk of these potential customers are in the investment community, Zadina said Adrenaline is confident it will see growing interest from biotech and pharmaceutical companies seeking an independent assessment of their bioinformatics offerings or requirements.