At the 10th BioCamp, Novartis in Slovenia brings together top students, academic institutions and business

  • For ten years, Novartis  in Slovenia has been organizing a top scientific event, confirming its focus on  development and innovation as well as fostering the development of young  experts.
  • The Jubilee BioCamp  will virtually bring together students of natural, business and technical  sciences from the region and beyond and renowned experts and leading managers  and offer them a unique insight into the world of the pharmaceutical industry.
  • The central  theme of this year’s forum, for which a record number of 191 students from 24  study countries applied and of whom 42 best applicants secured their participation,  is ‘new business models in pharma industry’.
19. 10. 2020

With welcome addresses by Robert Ljoljo, President of the Board of Management of Lek and Novartis Country President Slovenia, and Prof. Dr. Igor Papič, Rector of the University of Ljubljana, the 10th BioCamp kicked off today. A well-established project, with which Novartis in Slovenia enables a unique link between the academic and economic spheres and thus contributes to the development of young talents, science and the Slovenian economy, is taking place virtually this year due to the coronavirus disease epidemic.

For ten years now, the project has been offering students an insight into the developments in the pharmaceutical industry, bringing them together with entrepreneurship in the form of expert lectures, tours of state-of-the-art development and production processes, and networking. At the same time, it offers participants the opportunity to actively participate in the preparation of a project task, with which they develop their entrepreneurial mindset, innovation, communication skills and the ability to engage constructively within a team. In previous years, the expert panel selected the best teams and the best individuals who have proven themselves the most with their thinking, knowledge and contribution to teamwork.

Over ten years, the BioCamp has brought together over 300 young talents, of which more than 40 have been recruited by Novartis to date. The project also brought three winners on the global level, namely Ljerka Lah, PhD; Ognen Jakasanovski; and Janko Ignjatović, PhD. Ignjatović, Development Project Manager at the Development Center Slovenia, is also the new chair of the Organizing Committee of BioCamp, organized by Novartis in Slovenia. “The BioCamp is a unique event that opens the door to the world of pharmacy for the best students from the region and in recent years also   from regions beyond. It gives young people an exceptional opportunity to get acquainted with the latest approaches and trends in this field, and above all it offers them the opportunity to network with top experts from Slovenia and abroad and other talented students from Europe. From my own perspective, I can confirm that the forum is a truly invaluable experience,” said Ignjativić on the occasion of this year’s forum. Many former forum participants are today top scientists and members of research groups that have created many breakthrough innovations.

New business models in pharma industry

42 students from 14 countries of study are participating in this year’s BioCamp. The central theme of the forum is new business models in  pharma industry, which are made possible by the fourth industrial revolution. “The pharmaceutical industry has found itself at an important turning point. Rapid technological development and digitization provide an exceptional opportunity to introduce new models in healthcare, supported by digitization and data science, which will enable us to develop and launch new medicines on the market faster. In the near future, the key to success will be the talents that are distinguished both by their expertise in natural sciences, such as pharmacy, chemistry and biotechnology, as well as knowledge in the field of entrepreneurship and information technology.” commented Ignjatović on the challenges and opportunities in the pharmaceutical industry.

Key speakers at this year’s event will be top Slovenian and foreign experts in the field of pharmacy, medicine and economics:

  • Subodh Deshmukh, Head of Global Product Development, Sandoz,
  • Raul Intriago Lombeida, Head of Global Operations Center, Novartis Technical Operations and member of the Board of Management of Lek,
  • Prof. Uroš Urleb, PhD, Head Global Technical Development Biosimilars at Novartis and member of the Board of Management of Lek for R&D,
  • Prof. Marko Jakšič, PhD, Faculty of Economics, University of Ljubljana,
  • Sonja Praprotnik, MD, PhD, Clinical Department of Rheumatology, University Medical Center Ljubljana,
  • Rihard Knafelj, MD, PhD, Clinical Department of Internal Intensive Care, University Medical Center Ljubljana.

BioCamp is an awarded HR practice

The BioCamp is a high-profile HR project also on the national level, as is confirmed by two awards for excellence. In 2013, the project received a special Golden Practice Award, presented by the Slovenian media Dnevnik as part of the Golden Thread project – selecting the best employers in Slovenia. The project was also recognized as a unique HR practice at this year International Conference on the Development of Organizational Sciences, organized by the Faculty of Organizational Sciences of the University of Maribor. The members of the panel that evaluates the best HR practices in Slovenia, awarded BioCamp a special award Best HR Practice 2020 – with an honorary commendation.

“In ten years, the BioCamp has become a recognizable scientific and business event in Slovenia, the region and beyond. It is one of many projects that address young, promising professionals in various fields who can develop their talents in Novartis' international environment and pursue their personal and career ambitions. If we want to stay in the company of the best, we need to attract the best talents, which requires innovative approaches. I am proud that our HR practices stand out in Slovenia and that we are setting an example in this area as well. It is important that we do not rest on our laurels, so I am happy that the new generation is taking over the reins of the project, which will sustain the excellence of the project with commitment and responsibility, so that it will continue to exceed expectations and set new standards,” said dr. Darja Ferčej Temeljotov, Head Strategic Programs at Novartis in Slovenia and a long-standing president of the BioCamp organizing committee in previous nine years.

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Novartis is the leading provider of medicines in  Slovenia, where Lek, Novartis Pharma Services and Sandoz, operate. Together we are building and maintaining the reputation of a dynamic, ethical, and trusted pharmaceutical company. Lek develops, manufactures, and markets effective, safe, and high quality medicines and active pharmaceutical ingredients. With our knowledge, quality, and experience we have gained an important role in Novartis' organizational structure, especially in the Novartis Technical Operations, Global Drug Development, Novartis Business Services, and the generic division Sandoz. We are the leading Sandoz development center, and one of the key development sites for technologically complex projects. We invest a great deal in the development, education, and training of our employees. Over the last eight years, the company has created more than 2,700 jobs, making us one of the biggest employers in Slovenia. Novartis invested in Slovenia more than EUR 2.5 billion since 2003.

About Sandoz
Sandoz, a Novartis division, is a global leader in generic pharmaceuticals and biosimilars. Our purpose is to pioneer access for patients by developing and commercializing novel, affordable approaches that address unmet medical needs. Our ambition is to be the world’s leading and most valued generics company. Our broad portfolio of high-quality medicines, covering all major therapeutic areas, accounted for 2019 sales of USD 9.7 billion. Sandoz is headquartered in Holzkirchen, in Germany’s Greater Munich area.

Sandoz is on Twitter. Sign up to follow @SandozGlobal at

About Novartis
Novartis is reimagining medicine to improve and extend people’s lives. As a leading global medicines company, we use innovative science and digital technologies to create transformative treatments in areas of great medical need. In our quest to find new medicines, we consistently rank among the world’s top companies investing in research and development. Novartis products reach more than 800 million people globally and we are finding innovative ways to expand access to our latest treatments. About 109,000 people of more than 140 nationalities work at Novartis around the world. Find out more at

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This press release contains statements and  conclusions based on projections of Lek’s future business operations. These  estimates are derived from the best information currently available. In case  these forecasts prove unreliable, the actual results could prove different from  those projected.

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For additional information contact:
Katarina Klemenc
Corporate Communications
Lek Pharmaceuticals d. d.
Phone: +386 1 580 22 43
Fax: +386 1 580 24 32