Is biotech in Boston about to go bust?
- Yes, the industry is heading towards lean times as stock values dip and layoffs hit some employers.
- And, yes, there will be a real pain for property owners who’ve leaned into converting offices into labs or are building new facilities against multiple headwinds.
But, the Bloomberg authors suggest, the roots of Greater Boston’s biotech community are “steeped in a culture that has long seen profit as secondary to science” and will ultimately supersede market swings.
They point to “incidental billionaires,” such as Harvard Medical School immunologist-turned-billionaire Tim Springer, who said he’s too busy with research to think about his portfolio.
Same story with two famous, and very prolific MIT professors -- Phillip Sharp (A Nobel prize winner) and Bob Langer (a Moderna founder with more than 1,000 patents to his name) -- who also prioritize science over stocks.
“Whatever wealth I have that you may be referring to is on paper,” said Langer, a Newton resident when asked about the fortune he's made from Moderna. “I have not sold a single share of Moderna.”
“Even if their newfound wealth were wiped out, biotech moguls have said it wouldn’t matter much in the long run — the sector will keep expanding,” added Springer because there’s enough talent in the region that remains committed to the work.
Wondering where a bio billionaire does lunch?
Here's where Langer told us he likes to dine during our virtual Fall Business Breakfast in 2021.