The health sector and the pharmaceutical industry represent almost 45,000 jobs in Normandy. With over 10,000 employees, the Rouen University Hospital is the largest regional employer and more than 9,400 companies in the pharmaceutical or health sectors create large numbers of jobs.
Meanwhile, more than 3,000 teachers and researchers, engineers and PhD students contribute to the vitality of the sector through their research, resulting to date in the filing of more than 350 patents. The City Hall, the University Hospital, the Rouen Normandy metropolitan authority and Rouen University are all stakeholders that work together to develop the sector in the travel-to-work area of Rouen.
An economic environment conducive to the development of the biotechnology-health sector
Normandy is the 2nd most important region in France for pharmaceutical chemistry and 4the for the production of medicinal products. It has 135 establishments in chemistry and pharmacy (including Sanofi, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Janssen-Cilag, Aspen, etc.), 60 R&D centres and laboratories, two universities, one university hospital and the National Institute of Applied Sciences (INSA), which provides a training course in fine chemical engineering.
Together with the Centre region and the west of the Île-de-France region, Normandy forms the leading pharmaceutical production area in Europe, and regional research benefits from the vitality of the Cosmetic Valley (an inter-regional competitive cluster based in Chartres focusing on the sciences of beauty care and well-being) and Polepharma (a French cluster for pharmaceutical production containing all the skills required to develop and produce a medicinal product).
Rouen Innovation Santé: a single geographic area to promote exchanges
This dynamic is reinforced by the Rouen Health Innovation (RIS) development area which is designed to welcome new businesses in the health sector on its 6.2 hectares of land. It offers a range of financial services and networks as well as investment capital and interaction with the research campuses less than one hour from the Défense business district in Paris. In 2015 new premises designed to meet the needs of healthcare companies became available.
The RIS area also includes an extension of the University Hospital Centre (Mother and Child unit).
In 2016, a Medical Training Centre will supplement the campus and enhance its international status. Rouen will thus become one of the first French cities to host such an infrastructure. The area will enhance the attractiveness of the University Hospital Centre for young doctors and will be used to promote medical innovations developed in Rouen and attract new companies.
The Chemistry-Biology-Health (CBS) Technology Park: the excellence of the health-pharmaceutical sector in Rouen
The Chemistry-Biology-Health Technology Park (CBS) attracts leaders in the field of health by including significant research and training resources. Created in 2004 at the initiative of the Haute-Normandie Regional Council, since 2009 has been awarded the “business cluster” label issued by the Inter-ministerial Delegation for Regional Planning and Regional Attractiveness (DATAR).
The CBS Technology Park is designed to develop exchanges and cooperation between research and business with a service offering that focuses on two main areas: supporting growth and competitiveness to encourage the development of affairs of member companies (business dating days, working groups, international development, etc.) and to develop R&D Innovation projects facilitating industry/research intermediation.
Seine Biopolis: business incubator and service centre
It was in the same centre of excellence that the Seine Biopolis business incubator and service centre was launched. Six companies are already installed and benefit from the services offered as well as from the emulation specific to business incubators. They include innovative start-ups such as PlugMed, winner of the BioSIMS World innovation contest or Celenys, specializing in the development and sale of innovative media for 3D cell culture. Companies in advanced technology sectors such as telehealth (or e-health) also are present.
Seine Biopolis is the third business incubator and service centre in the Rouen Normandy Creation network. The infrastructure offers both accommodation with attractive rental terms and personalized support (administration, business plan, marketing, finance, strategy, fund-raising, etc.) allowing young firms (less than four years old) to develop.