Corrections or additions?

This column was prepared for the April 19, 2006 issue of U.S. 1

Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Between the Lines

In last week’s cover story, "New Jersey Economy: Half Full or…,"

James Hughes, dean of Rutgers Bloustein School, suggests that New

Jersey’s once vaunted economy is losing its edge. Hughes sees a glass

half empty. Since then, several more experts have weighed in on the

subject, and they see the glass half full.

The optimists are the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), which

met in Chicago last week, and Battelle Memorial Institute, which

compiled a report entitled "Growing the Nation’s Bioscience Sector:

State Bioscience Initiatives 2006." The report covered the period from

2001 to 2004 and, according to Debbie Hart, president of the

Biotechnology Council of New Jersey, it shows that the biotechnology

industry in New Jersey continues to see significant advancements, such

as a rise in the number of employees working at biotechnology related

businesses. This rate is "significantly higher than the rate seen in

other areas of like size," says Hart.

New Jersey was the only state that specialized in all four bioscience

subsectors measured by the report.

Look at that list and names of companies pop to mind. Drugs and

pharmaceuticals? That’s easy. Start with Bristol-Myers Squibb and J&J.

Research testing and medical laboratories? We have plenty – 100 of

them listed in the U.S. 1 Business Directory this year. Medical

devices and equipment? Princeton has 20 companies, starting with

Integra Life Sciences. Agricultural feedstock and chemicals? FMC and

Fort Dodge Animal Health, for instance.

The New Jersey Commerce, Economic Growth and Tourism Commission is

delighted because the report praised such policies as investment in

stem cell research, innovation zones, venture capital funding, and

investment in academic research. Only three other states funded

stem-cell research, and only three other states increased academic

funding for technology transfer and commercialization activities.

Another "glass half full" optimist is Thomas Moor, CEO of Select

Greater Philadelphia, who speaks at the Nassau Club on Friday, April

21 (see page 8 of this issue). Moor flouts the commonly held view that

Princeton is expensive. He claims that Princeton and Mercer County are

part of the greater Philadelphia region, where average household

expenses are 50 percent lower than in New York, Boston, or San

Francisco. He says the Business Cost Index (which covers the costs of

labor, energy, taxes, and office space), shows business costs are

lower than in New York, San Francisco, or Boston.

With those statistics, who wouldn’t want to live and do business here?

NJBiz, on April 17, quoted a study by Moody’s that

suggests New York will run short of office space and bring more Big

Apple companies to New Jersey. If so, some half empty buildings along

Route 1 could become closer to full.

Directory Day. The U.S. 1 Business Directory is scheduled to be

delivered to our parking lot as this issue of the newspaper goes to

press. Barring a last minute printing or trucking glitch, our

deliverers will carry both the newspapers and the directories this

April 19.

If you are the person who should receive your company’s U.S. 1

Directory, check your company’s reception area when you read this.

After today, the directories are on sale for $18.95 plus shipping.

They will be available at the U.S. 1 office, as well as several area

bookstores, including Barnes & Noble at MarketFair and Micawber Books

on Nassau Street.

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