A newly released report from Jones Lang LaSalle, a financial and professional services firm specializing in real estate services and investment management, looks at the world in terms of life-sciences investment, and finds some not-so-surprising trends over the past 10 years. The report ranked areas of the world according to how much direct investment they received in life sciences, and compared the rankings made between 2003–2006 with those made between 2007–2010. Those time periods were chosen to represent periods before and after the world-wide economic slowdown. Not surprisingly, on both lists, the US was number one, with Ireland, China, and Singapore also in the top 5 in both analyses. However, there have been some changes over the past few years. Puerto Rico, which ranked number 8 on the 2003–2006 list, failed to make the top 10 ranking in the 2007–2010 list. And Canada and Brazil, two non-European countries, replaced Sweden and France as top 10 recipients of life-sciences investments. India, ranked at number 9 in the 2003–2006 analysis, moved up to number 4 in the more recent ranking.
Despite the economic slowdown after 2006, the total number of dollars invested in US life sciences far outstripped the rest of the world. The US saw investments of $73.3 billion between 2007–2010, up from $38.7 between 2003–2006, an increase of $34.6 billion. In contrast, the next runner up, China, saw an increase in investments of $10.1 billion, to reach $29.8 billion in 2007–2010. Most other areas of the world witnessed much more modest increases, or declines in investment. For instance, Ireland, which still made the top 10, witnessed a decline in investments of $21.1 billion. This shows that despite the global economic slowdown and all the wailing and gnashing of teeth over the movement of facilities to Asia, the US is still receiving a huge amount of life-sciences investment. Those of us in the US should consider ourselves lucky.