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Friday, September 18, 2009

BiotechCorp, UEM Land to develop biotech park

MALAYSIAN Biotechnology Corp Sdn Bhd (BiotechCorp) has teamed up with property developer UEM Land Holdings Bhd to jointly set up a biotechnology park in Nusajaya, Johor, with an initial investment of RM550 million.

The two companies signed a joint-venture agreement yesterday to develop the biotech park dubbed "Bio-XCell" at the Southern Industrial and Logistics Clusters (SiLC) in Nusajaya.

BiotechCorp will hold a 60 per cent stake in the joint venture company, while UEM Land will take the rest.

Bio-XCell aims to create a dedicated biotech park with custom-built facilities catering to commercial development, research and development as well as production of industrial and pharmaceutical biotech products.
The RM550 million will pay for the land, as well as primary and secondary infrastructure.

"We will raise the money needed through a combination of internally generated funds and borrowings," BiotechCorp chief executive officer Datuk Iskandar Mizal told reporters after its signing ceremony in Kuala Lumpur.

The event was graced by Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and Deputy Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Fadillah Yusof.

BiotechCorp has identified and started engagements with several targeted strategic international partners and collaborators to anchor Bio-XCell.

The event did not only mark the start of the joint venture between BiotechCorp and UEM Land, but also saw Holista Biotech Sdn Bhd signed a collaboration agreement with University Sains Malaysia (USM) and University Technology Malaysia (UTM).

Holista recently concluded its reverse takeover (RTO) of an Australian biotech company, Colltech Australia Ltd, which is listed on the Australian stock exchange.

Colltech is in the development and commercialisation of ovine (sheep) collagen.

The collaboration with USM is to conduct research on the development of "halal" collagen and collagen standardisation, expected to turn Malaysia into an important player in the global collagen market.

Holista's tie-up with UTM, meanwhile, is in the launching of an anti-aging cream with "Kacip Fatima". The initiative will be a first in the world.

By Business Times (by Presenna Nambiar)

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