Abomics exports genome data interpretation services to the world
Founded in Turku in 2013, Abomics Oy specializes in interpreting genetic tests for laboratories and providing information services for health care professionals and patients. The ICT solutions developed by Abomics help to apply research data in patient care, making it possible to tailor treatments according to an individual patient’s genome.
“There is clearly a market for Abomics’ expertise. We have good products and a partly automated and scalable service for the situations where laboratories don’t have enough know-how to interpret all the genomic data that they can produce. It currently available in Finnish, English and German, but we are ready to take it to quite a few countries,” says Jari Forsström, CEO, Abomics.
In December 2016, Abomics signed an agreement with Synlab, the biggest provider of laboratory services in Europe. Synlab has a presence in over 30 countries and is now expanding its own offering with help of the accurate and reliable genetic testing interpretation service provided by the Finnish company.
Support from Finpro in Japan
Abomics has participated in Finpro’s export promotion trips to the United States, Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Japan. The most fruitful trips have been to Japan where networking events arranged by Finpro supported the negotiations Abomics had already started with Fujitsu.
“As part of the delegation trip Finpro has invited Fujitsu’s executives to the receptions of the Finnish ambassador and this has been much appreciated by Fujitsu. Last time we also managed to invite the chairman of Japan’s pharmacogenetics association, who is an important person from the viewpoint of our business,” says Forsström.
Abomics has made a pilot agreement with Fujitsu, under which Fujitsu has trained its own personnel to demonstrate Abomics’ databases to its customers in Japanese hospitals. Two university hospitals have been selected to test Abomics’ two databases related to the effects of genetic variation on medical dosage.
“Based on the pilot project, Fujitsu will decide whether it will start selling the products more actively in the Japanese market.”
Excellent preconditions for growth
The solution developed by Abomics for the international market can be localized according to the language, register and brand of the local laboratory. In 2017, the company is aiming for a turnover of EUR 1 million but in two years’ time the target is already EUR 10 million. The biggest share of the turnover is expected to come from the major European countries.
“The use of pharmacogenetics in health care is expanding fast. Our biggest challenge is to be have a strong sales presence in different countries when many laboratories are starting to plan to test pharmacogenetics. We have the know-how needed by the labs so now we are really trying to activate the sales work,” says Forsström.
The cooperation with Synlab represents a major step forward. Synlab’s comprehensive partner network and international know-how will enable Abomics to expand its business, creating the preconditions to continue the expansion into new countries and language areas.
Finland has unique genomic and IT expertise
From Abomics’ perspective, the prospects for Finnish health exports are looking good, especially in regard to genomics and the related IT.
“In Finland there is a lot of buzz and good companies are coming up. I believe that health technology is a fast-growing area. Currently, the exports are still weighted towards laboratory equipment, X-ray equipment and dental equipment. But sales based on pure know-how, expert services and the related software will make quite a big contribution in the next few years,” says Forsström.
“There is a great deal of unique genomics and IT know-how in Finland. This expertise is combined better in Finland than just about anywhere else.”