Member Spotlight / News - February 28, 2022

EUCOPE Member Spotlight: Q&A with Circius Pharma

Every month, EUCOPE spotlights a member company and the great work they’re doing to advance the life sciences industry and drive innovation to serve patients better. In February, we spoke with Jan G. Smith, CEO of Circius Pharma. Jan has over 40 years of experience in leading and building international companies within pharmaceuticals and medical technologies. He is the founder of ABIGO medical with sales in 65 countries and strong international patented and recognized brands.

Tell us about your organisation and its mission.

Circius Pharma, wholly owned by me, was founded in 2021 following the decision from ABIGO Medical to divest its pharma division. We offer a wide range of patient-centered products and strong brands. Our goal is to create a globally successful company focusing on the health of the patient. We will get there through long-term collaborations, innovative products, and a large portion of entrepreneurship and commitment.


What do you see as the biggest challenge facing the life sciences industry today in Europe?

Life sciences are dealing with incoming patent issues as multiple blockbuster drugs lose patent protection. At the same time, the industry’s success in delivering the COVID-19 vaccines has shown that it can respond to crises with great agility and swiftness. Its response has further heightened the high expectations of patients, clinicians, and health care providers who are digitally conditioned to expect better and faster results.

When it comes to the development model, I think each company must find its own identity. One suit does not fit everyone, and you have to adapt to circumstances. But innovation should be the basis. In the past, big biopharmaceutical companies have tended to do much of their R&D and innovation in-house. To innovate at speed and deliver value to patients and shareholders, as well as tap into novel developments such as cell and gene therapies (CGTs), they will need to change their approach in the future and embrace a strategy of “transact to transform.”

In other words, bigger biopharma companies increasingly need to complement their internal innovation capabilities with external capabilities acquired from smaller, highly specialised, and highly efficient biotech start-ups. These smaller companies will enable them to accelerate their innovation processes and drive growth while reinforcing their market positions as global science and technology leaders.

What attracted you to join EUCOPE and how can we help you achieve your business goals?

From my experience in large multinational companies, I have acquired an aversion to bureaucracy and internal politics. I much prefer mid-size companies, where it is possible to have a different mentality. For a mid-sized company, the idea is to combine a strong portfolio of innovative products, a fast-moving and competent marketing organization, and a reliable network of trusted distributors. As the voice of small to mid-sized health technology companies, EUCOPE is an attractive association to join.

First and foremost, EUCOPE provides a platform for discussions on major healthcare topics and developments. You focus on EU legislation and policies but also on pricing and reimbursement matters at Member States’ level. Your ad hoc expertise on national market access issues, as well your close relationship with many national medicines and HTA agencies in Europe, are particularly useful for us, and I’m sure for many of the other members.

What are your current initiatives to foster innovation and help patients in the coming year?

Circius Pharma began a year ago since the takeover of ABIGO´s pharma division. We continue to develop our brands and products internationally while investing resources in R&D in order to stay relevant. We have exciting ongoing research and I have no doubt that in roughly five years’ time, Circius will have new innovative products on the market covered by strong patents. In our research efforts, collaboration with universities and clinical research organisations (CROs) is a key success factor. As a mid-sized company, we can compete even with larger companies by being part of a cluster of innovative, well-educated people. Before we used to be out of their radar, but larger companies in our field may begin to notice us in due time as a dynamic competitor, which is flattering in a way. We are here to stay and will continue to grow through innovation and entrepreneurship.

For more information about EUCOPE membership

Contact our Business Development Manager Dante Di Iulio