For the past six years FierceBiotech's annual list of the Fierce 15 has been our single most popular publishing event for readers. And late in the summer, the editors that work on FierceBiotech got together and started a special project, going back over our winners and checking up on where they are now. Our project begins today, with Calisha Myers' look back at the Fierce 15 of 2003.
It's been a lot of fun over the years picking the Fierce 15. It's a chance to recognize companies with great management, cutting-edge research and bright prospects. Of course, the biotech graveyard is full of companies that started out with all three. And then some. We live in a high-reward, high-penalty environment. And over the past year the ice has never been thinner.
The 15 biotech companies we chronicled in 2003 have experienced all the thrills, spills and chills any experienced industry analyst has grown accustomed to. There are cautionary tales, last-minute deals that averted disaster and a few that have stayed independent, struck big licensing deals and forged a successful development record that could qualify for a list of the top Fierce 15 companies of all time.
Interested in exit strategies? More than a few were bought out, and several fetched a high price.
There are lessons aplenty here that would help inspire and terrorize anyone running a biotech company. Every Tuesday for the next six weeks we'll bring you a new edition of the Fierce 15 Revisited. We hope you enjoy the trip down memory lane.