Boehringer Ingelheim to open hub in China

Boehringer has invested an initial €3 million to open a second branch of its digital lab BI X in Shanghai

Boehringer Ingelheim has announced that it will open a second branch of its digital lab BI X in July this year.

The company is, therefore, moving to the emerging start-up hub Shanghai in China. Boehringer Ingelheim has invested an initial €3 million and created 20 new jobs for digital talents developing innovative solutions for Chinese patients.

The BI X headquarters in Ingelheim and the new subsidiary in Shanghai will work in close collaboration.

The concept of BI X is to use digital innovation to accelerate the development of healthcare solutions and to help discovery of breakthrough treatments for humans and animals. Since its start in 2017, BI X has delivered many projects with a strong impact worldwide. Using iterative processes and continuous development, Scrum Masters, Data Scientists, Engineers and UX Designers working at BI X test and prove new applications within months.

Compared to other parts of the world, the Chinese digital landscape shows great differences. By opening BI X in Shanghai, Boehringer Ingelheim wants to better identify topics and needs relevant to Chinese patients and customers.

Compared to other parts of the world, the Chinese digital landscape shows great differences

"With this step we are strengthening our footprint in a market that is very strong in digital innovation in healthcare and has a unique technological landscape. The close proximity to our Chinese patients and customers will enable us to develop better disruptive products for them and tap into the high digital capabilities in China," said Michael Schmelmer, Member of the Board of Managing Directors with responsibility for Finance.

Boehringer Ingelheim entered the Chinese market 25 years ago and has since locally developed and grown.

"Today, China is one of the most important markets for Boehringer Ingelheim. Moreover, it is one of the epicenters of digital health innovation in the world," explained Felix Gutsche, Country Managing Director China at Boehringer Ingelheim.

Boehringer Ingelheim relies on external partnerships and collaborations for its new digital lab, for example with domestic start-ups.

"As one of the very few pharmaceutical companies who are taking the lead in riding the wave of digitalisation in China, we very much look forward to building a dedicated digital innovation business in China and to offer our patients and customers purposeful and disruptive new solutions," added Gutsche.

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