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29/06/2022 Samsung Bioepis Spotlight: Driving Change and Innovation

Innovation doesn’t happen in the blink of an eye, overnight, or even by chance. Creating novel ideas, methods, and practices takes time, dedication, and a team effort. Weaved into our decade-long history is a story of innovation just so. Only as a reflection of the hard work, passion, and support of Samsung Bioepis team members globally did we become the change-making force in the healthcare industry we are today.  

In the early years, there were as many achievements as initial anxieties. Taking on the mandate of innovating access is not a small feat, but Samsung Bioepis dared to challenge the status quo, an approach that still serves as essential support for our tenacity.

While developing initial products, Dami Song, Bioassay Group Principal Scientist, recalled “setting up systems one by one.” She added, “The experience was challenging but rewarding at the same time.” Small but mighty teams tackled unique obstacles with an all-hands-on-deck approach – setting the groundwork for a corporate culture that values collaboration and cooperation. Soyeon Park, Development Support Group Manager, said, “There were only a few pieces of equipment for antibody analysis, so we had to check ELISA and thousands of 96-well plates manually.” She added, “We were under pressure but enjoyed learning as a team. Those experiences we had together are what helped establish the initial company practices and structure.”

As Samsung Bioepis’ biosimilars progressed, so did opportunities, growing the company and its impact one therapy at a time. With multiple products entering clinical trials, Minjung Kim, Clinical Group Leader, remembers a period of great learning. She recalled, “I was in the process of administering our biosimilar to a patient for the first time, and I was nervous but excited at the same time. It was a great opportunity to learn how clinical trials were conducted. Since we started from nothing, there were times when we had concerns about whether all of this was possible.”

Saebom Seo, Clinical Group Senior Manager, summed up the era nicely, “I learned things like ‘No matter what situation you are in, there’s always a way out’ and ‘There is nothing that can’t be done.’”



Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

Against this backdrop, an unprecedented challenge arose for Samsung Bioepis and people worldwide. The 2019 global pandemic redefined the workplace experience and required a new approach to R&D and supply chain management practices.

Reflecting, Jae-il Lee, External Manufacturing Planning Group Leader, said, “Production was not easy even before the COVID-19. We overcame the difficulties because of well-established partnerships and the efforts of all our team members.”

Maintaining smooth operations during such uncertainty was achieved only through the dedication of our staff and global partners. “I thought of it as a long-distance relay race. It was helpful for us that Samsung Bioepis and its partners were able to work as one team by taking turns,” said KyungA Kate Oh, Senior Manager of External Manufacturing Operation Group, “We were successful because we continued our work without anyone dropping a baton in the middle.”

As the cherry on top of an incredible decade of innovation, Samsung Bioepis moved into its new home in Songdo, South Korea, in 2021. Yun Bong Heo, Infra Support Group Leader, remembers the state-of-the-art office as a challenge all its own, stating, “The most memorable moment was when we overcame all the hurdles and achieved the goal of completing construction by December 2020.”

Nevertheless, Samsung Bioepis’ work remains far from finished. Our determined and talented colleagues are undoubtedly the driving forces of Samsung Bioepis’ innovation. Recognizing and remembering their contribution and dedication during our first decade not only offers insight into how far we’ve come but also allows us to look forward to the exciting opportunities that await us in our next decade and beyond. Together we’re committed to continually innovating and creating more equitable access to healthcare globally. 



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