Former CEO Shares Thoughts on How Gov. Shapiro Can Boost PA’s Innovation Economy

Image via Spark Therapeutics.
Jeff Marrazzo is the former CEO of Spark Therapeutics and member of Gov. Josh Shapiro's transition team's innovation subcommittee.

Jeff Marrazzo, the former CEO of Philadelphia-based Spark Therapeutics and a member of the innovation subcommittee of Gov. Josh Shapiro’s transition team, has several ideas on how Pennsylvania’s new governor can support the state’s innovation economy, particularly companies in biotechnology and life sciences, writes Harold Brubaker for The Philadelphia Inquirer.

The first step is to govern as the state’s chief marketing officer. In situations when there is an opportunity for economic development or new company creation, a business-minded governor can act as chief sales and marketing person for the state and help facilitate deals.

Marrazzo also hopes that Shapiro will look at Pennsylvania objectively and determine what it has that could make it world class in two or three industries. Then, he should make several big bets to support those industries.

Building laboratory and manufacturing infrastructure would also help attract companies in innovation industries, as startups are often forced to use around 20 percent of their venture capital building out a lab.

“Ideally, those new ventures would spend all their resources recruiting people and running experiments and doing clinical trials, not building lab space,” said Marrazzo.

Read more about the ways to boost Pennsylvania’s innovation economy in The Philadelphia Inquirer.

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