“What is the biggest challenge in moving a foreign biotechnology company to the United States?”
I asked this question at the Delaware-New Jersey-Pennsylvania annual biotechnology conference and received a surprising response. The consensus was neatly stated by one of the panelists: “Moving to the US is like stealing in church.”
For all the problems one might perceive that foreign companies may have, the panelists agreed that the reduced bureaucracy, relative to European and Asian nations, made the United States a relatively easy place to grow. They stated that they had few problems with visas or recruitment, and the greatest problem one panelist experienced was finding the time to apply for a drivers license.
This sentiment is in stark contrast with the software industry, where visas and recruitment are cited as significant impediments.