Daily News: January 28, 2015

New Wells Fargo Expands Life Sciences Unit

Wells Fargo announced expansion of its commercial banking capabilities to serve life sciences companies. The company named Katherine Andersen, a 15-year finance veteran of the region, to a new technology banking post dedicated to Life Sciences in New England.

Andersen began her career with GE Capital before joining Merrill Lynch Global Markets and Investment Banking in New York. Andersen moved in 2006 to Boston, where she joined Wells Fargo Capital Finance.

Andersen, who had served as a director of Wells Fargo Capital Finance since 2006, will focus on companies in pharmaceuticals, medical devices and tools, healthcare information technology, biotechnology and diagnostics. She joins a technology banking office in Boston that formed in January 2014 as part of the company’s initiative to serve technology hubs nationwide.

“As the world’s largest life sciences cluster, Boston is rich with opportunities to serve middle-market companies throughout this diverse sector,” said Greg O’Brien, regional VP for commercial banking in New England. “The cluster’s growth engine is fueled by a huge pipeline of venture capital plus state and federal funding from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center and the National Institutes of Health.”

In addition to Massachusetts’ industry concentration, which now totals 738 biotech and pharma companies, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Andersen’s responsibilities include the region’s deep ranks of academic institutions, medical centers, research labs, and incubators.

Wells Fargo, which opened its Boston technology banking office in January 2014, plans to open more east coast offices this year with eyes on the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.