Dallas-Fort Worth’s biotech boom pushes it into the metro’s top 20 for life sciences

Dallas-Fort Worth is experiencing a biotech boom which now places it among the top metros in the country for life sciences companies.

D-FW entered the top 20 for the first time, scoring 16th in a CommercialEdge analysis. He surveyed 45 metropolitan areas and used data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the US Census Bureau and his own research.

Houston, with its 2.1 square miles of research-oriented medical district, was the highest-ranked city in Texas, placing 10th. Perennial life sciences leaders Boston, San Francisco and San Diego took the top three spots.

CommercialEdge ranks cities on a composite 100-point scale based on life sciences employment, educational attainment, square footage of real estate and percentage of the total office market. It also looked at other factors such as LEED-certified square footage, rent and vacancy rates, and projects in the pipeline.

D-FW received an overall score of 20.6 points, enough to place it in the top third of metropolitan areas. Its strongest measures were “a significant talent pool and a relatively affordable office market,” CommercialEdge said.

The region also scored well for its educated workforce, with about 744,000 residents age 25 and older with at least a bachelor’s degree in life sciences.

DFW also scored high in the average vacancy rate, meaning it’s easy for companies to find new locations at a reasonable price. This makes it attractive to startups that want to spend money on research and development instead of high rents for lab space.

“We have a great track record in the biotech sector in DFW and our assets and reputation are building in a positive direction,” wrote Mike Rosa, senior vice president of economic development at the Dallas Regional Chamber, following several national studies describing D-FW as an emerging biotech hub. . “Biotech is alive and growing in DFW.”

Biotech, biopharmaceutical and medical research giants have been in North Texas for years and contribute to the region’s large life sciences workforce. These companies include Alcon, Baylor Scott and White Health, Kimberly-Clark, McKesson, Merck and Tenet Healthcare. Irving-based precision medicine pioneer Caris Life Sciences made a huge investment last year that gave it an $8 billion valuation.

A burgeoning startup ecosystem is also starting to contribute. BioLabs opened its ninth location in Dallas’ Pegasus Park in March, its first location in America’s heartland. As a biotech incubator, it has already seen successful startups enter the market.

Aakha Biologics recently moved out of the BioLabs facility to pursue its own permanent headquarters in Frisco, and BioLabs resident ReCode Therapeutics recently closed a $200 million investment round.

Two years ago, Dallas-based Coldwell Banker Richard Ellis Group, a commercial real estate services and investment firm, described D-FW as an emerging cluster for the growth and development of life science companies.

Dallas and Tarrant counties combined have nearly 27,000 life sciences employees at more than a thousand businesses. The sector includes chemical manufacturing, pharmaceutical and medical manufacturing, medical equipment and supplies manufacturing, research and development services, medical laboratories and imaging centers.

“The growing demand for products and services in the life sciences sector is driving intense demand not only for talent, but also for real estate to expand existing clusters, as well as to form new ones and enhance the national network,” according to CommercialEdge.

Biotech sprouts into Dallas-Fort Worth’s next big thing, based on seeds planted decades ago

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