PharmEssentia: The 30-Year Dream

Dec 01, 2010
By Pharmaceutical Executive


Ko Chung Lin, Founder, President & CEO of Pharmæssentia and his team
"In my mind," says Ko-Chung Lin, founder, president, and CEO of PharmaEssentia, "the story of AstraZeneca was particularly striking: it shows you can start a very small company and grow it to play a major role in a 30-year time frame. Taiwan is capable of creating such a company, and it is our responsibility to try and make this happen." He explains that the groundwork for the foundation of his company was laid in 1997, when Taiwanese government officials visited him and his team in the Boston area, and encouraged them to come back to Taiwan and found PharmaEssentia. The company grew from there.

"We have two groups of people at PharmaEssentia," Lin explains: "Old men like myself, and then the young and well-educated people that work in the labs. They read papers and do research by themselves very well." Despite Lin's self-effacing explanation, it is his vision and his selection of founding partners that has driven PharmaEssentia's development. Inspired by their experiences in the US with cutting-edge biotech companies such as Amgen and Biogen, their business model is well constructed and their science drives right to the heart of global demand. Through a combination of chemistry and biology, revenue- and value-driving products, and with five molecules in the pipeline, Lin is hopeful that PharmaEssentia is destined for a profitable future: "These molecules are very big in terms of revenue on the market right now, namely alpha-interferon, beta-interferon, EPO, rh-GH, and GCSF. Every one is a billion-dollar molecule itself."

Lin is convincing when he says, "Thirty to 50 years from now, PharmaEssentia could be huge."