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  • Writer's pictureAaryn Lynham

Somru BioScience Ltd.

About

Somru is an emerging biotechnology company established by Moin and wife Dihan, together with his brother Rafiq Islam and wife Clarinda. With a client base of over 70 companies in 23 countries, Somru is becoming a leader in the bioscience sector both in PEI and on the international stage. Somru's tools advance biosimilar production to reduce drug development costs, resulting in more affordable and accessible medicines for patients.


In 2015, Somru was recognized for its impressive growth, innovation and leadership in its sector as the recipient of the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce Emerging Business award. In 2017, Somru entered a joint venture with a Bangladeshi company, Radiant Pharmaceuticals, and this collaboration is valued at over $50 million over five years.


Project Overview

I wrote this client feature while working for ACOA for the July 2018 intranet story after an announcement Minister Navdeep Bains made regarding this client. I conferred with Somru's Account Manager, Jennifer White, to fact-check and ensure accuracy of information.

 

19 Innovation Way, Charlottetown

July 2018 ACOA intranet story

Mohammed Moin attended the University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI) as an international student from Bangladesh. After graduating in 2005 with a Bachelor of Computer Science, minor in Business Administration, Moin (his preferred name) and wife Dihan decided to remain in PEI, rather than uproot their growing family. Moin worked with many start-up companies before founding Somru BioScience in 2012.


Somru is an emerging biotechnology company established by Moin and Dihan, together with his brother Rafiq Islam and wife Clarinda. With a client base of over 70 companies in 23 countries, Somru is becoming a leader in the bioscience sector both in PEI and on the international stage. The brothers and their wives hold executive roles in the company, making Somru a literal and figurative family-run corporation.


Moin often reflects on growing up in Bangladesh when their father was diagnosed with cancer. Moin quickly realized how expensive and inaccessible biologic drugs are, which his father needed to treat his illness. The company name Somru originates from his father's nickname.

Moin says the name Somru "resonates, and it reminds me we're doing something that's helping people's [lives]."

Somru is dedicated to playing a vital role in developing more affordable medicines worldwide by creating tools to help manufacture biosimilars: a lower-cost alternative to expensive biologics (medicines made from living cells used to treat chronic and serious illness). Somru's tools advance biosimilar production to reduce drug development costs, resulting in more affordable and accessible medicines for patients.


Moin says the combination of supports and resources for the bioscience sector enticed his family to start Somru in PEI. He often commends organizations like PEI BioAlliance, ACOA, NRC and the Provincial government for fostering a spirit of innovation and excellence; a support system that appealed to the brothers. Jennifer White, ACOA Account Manager for Somru says,

"Financial support is obviously important to bioscience companies; however, the professional network and support for this cluster is invaluable, making PEI a hub of innovation in this sector. This kind of accessibility continues to be a strength and asset that have companies choosing PEI to start or expand businesses."

ACOA has a well-established relationship with Somru, having provided funding support on four previous projects prior to the $3 million investment from the Atlantic Innovation Fund (AIF) announced by Minister Bains on July 11, 2018.

In addition to having a large crowd of PEI bioscience colleagues on hand for the announcement, Somru also welcomed numerous friends and family from Bangladesh. Upon Minister Bains' arrival, children of the two families greeted him and presented him with a bouquet of flowers - Somru literally rolled out the red carpet at this special event!


Moin and Rafiq's father was a schoolteacher from a small village in Bangladesh who always believed in giving back to his community. Moin announced at the event that,

"In fostering this spirit of giving back, Somru is in talks with UPEI and has plans to sponsor two scholarships for international students from Bangladesh to study at the university."

Clarinda said at the event that,

"This milestone brings us closer in realizing our mission of developing innovative solutions to biosimilar drug development so they touch the lives of people in need around the world."

In 2015, Somru was recognized for its impressive growth, innovation and leadership in its sector as the recipient of the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce Emerging Business award. In 2017, Somru entered a joint venture with a Bangladeshi company, Radiant Pharmaceuticals, and this collaboration is valued at over $50 million over five years. The company is also a 2018 Edward Young Entrepreneur of the Year nominee; the winner will be announced at a gala hosted in early October.


These achievements are strong indicators of Somru's bright future and its vision of bringing affordable medicines to the world. This company, and the family's story, is a remarkable example of how innovation, entrepreneurship and immigration can align, creating a profound, widespread impact.


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