JPM2023 will be an event like no other. How can you make the most of it?

The annual J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference (JPM), Biotech Showcase, and ancillary meetings are back, live and in-person, in January 2023, providing a unique opportunity to make connections among life sciences and health care emerging companies, pharmas, investors, and advisors.

Start-up biotech companies in particular need to use their time wisely to meet strategic partners and form relationships with the ultimate goal of raising capital. Whether you are a first time participant, or are back again after the Covid-19 shutdowns of the past few years, there are steps you can take now to help make the most of your experience.

While caution remains the theme of this prolonged downturn in the market, we believe that start-up companies having strong data and sound fundamentals remain well positioned to continue to attract investments, so long as they seek out the right investors and partners. This year more than ever, it is important to clarify your objectives for attending JPM and other in-person events. Prioritizing the right connections – and making the most of precious face time – is crucial. Here are our recommendations on how and when to prepare:

  • Do your homework.

    • Rely on your board, university technology transfer office, or other trusted advisors to help build strategically targeted personal relationships.

    • Stay in touch with contacts when you don’t have an investment “ask”.

    • Develop pitch decks to target specific investors and/or partners. Just as no two innovators are alike, neither are prospective investors and/or partners. Be sure your development stage and technology align with your requestees’.

    • Develop an elevator speech to describe your personal background in 20 seconds or less.

Early to mid-November
  • Confirm your team’s participation. Book flights, hotel, and any meeting rooms.

  • Reach out to prospective contacts to let them know that you or your team will attend JPM and would like to schedule a meeting.

    • Be selective in your meeting requests. Make sure that there is a strategic purpose to the meeting that fits your overall goals.

    • Be clear on what you need and why you are reaching out. Make clear in the first line of your email what you are seeking.

    • Be clear on your development stage (preclinical, clinical) and technology.

  • Be wary of sending blanket meeting requests.

  • Refine pitch decks tailored to specific audiences.

Early December
  • Stay in contact with all meeting requestees to confirm interest and align calendars.

    • Send polite reminders, as needed.

    • Be open to short and more casual handshake-style meetings to get in front of key contacts.

Late December
  • Finalize your meeting schedule.

    • Pre-register for evening networking events.

    • Remember to allow transit time between meeting and event venues – San Francisco is hilly and taxis can be hard to find when demand is high.

    • Leave time in your schedule to be opportunistic for ad hoc conversations.

  • Schedule printer time for any business cards, flip books, or other hard copy handouts.
First week in January
  • Hit the ground running for a good start to the year.

  • Confirm any scheduled in-person meetings.

  • Finalize pitch decks tailored to specific audiences.

  • Use in-person meetings to “get to the yes”.

    • Send materials to attendees the night before your meeting, if possible, even if not the fully finalized presentation deck.

    • Don’t spend precious time with a lengthy introduction and personal background. Your attendees will have done their diligence on you, just as you have done on them, if you follow our tips.

    • Bring any hard copy handouts to your meetings.

  • Send a follow up including your presentation as soon as you finish your pitch to stay in front of your audience.

    • Include all relevant contact details (social media, email, phone number) to make it as easy as possible to reach you.

  • Pace yourself – it’s a marathon of a week.

Mid-January and beyond
  • Set up additional meetings and keep up the momentum for additional outreach.

  • Follow up again to stay top of mind for your meeting audiences.

Why Hogan Lovells?

We don't just get you off the ground; we're here to grow with you.

From corporate formation to patent protection and strategy to initial financing rounds, we help your company lay a strong foundation, with life sciences and health care industry expertise at the forefront throughout. As your business grows and your needs evolve, so does our team of lawyers who can support your company's strategic business needs relative to your product's development stage, including regulatory approval planning, clinical trial design, pricing and reimbursement strategy, licensing, collaborations and other commercial transactions, and commercialization and product launch planning.

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Authored by Kristin Connarn and Andrew Strong.


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