Women in Life Sciences

Thu, May 19 2022 at 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM

Abcam, Cambridge

Bailey Fisher and Penningtons Manches Cooper were pleased to host their first Women in Life Sciences (WILS) Breakfast recently.  The event was hosted by Zoe Robson, Partner at Bailey Fisher and Rachel Bradley, Partner at Penningtons.   Zoe and Rachel brought together a peer group of female CEOs from early stage companies across life sciences and health technology for open discussion and to share experiences and challenges they’re facing in growing their business.   Challenges discussed ranged from funding to lack of peer support, but there was a general consensus in 3 key areas: 

•    Culture – including the importance of getting culture and values right early on in a business’ journey and communicating this to investors.  The challenge of finding people with purpose, who want to make a difference, and the importance of attitude over ability. 

•    Hiring - the key concern being getting the right people.  Attendees are facing challenges hiring when scaling as well as difficulties in hiring software developers due to high demand and inflated salaries for these roles.  Board development is a challenge, including hiring a Chair/mentor figure to support the CEO. 

•    Making a business visible to customers, particularly the NHS - concerns were raised over how to make a business visible to the NHS.  Selling into the NHS is proving very difficult, as it is still recovering from the challenges of Covid, and the sales cycle is so long.  This raises the challenge of diversifying outside of the NHS.

Zoe and Rachel would like to thank Abcam for hosting the event.  The next Women in Life Sciences Breakfast will take place on Thursday 29 September (subject to final confirmation). If you are CEO of an early stage Life Science or Health Technology business and would like to find out more, please contact Zoe Robson.