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A total of eleven spinoffs and startups will participate in the program for three years, where they will receive training, mentoring, and advisement in a PCB laboratory. The initiative is being spearheaded by the Barcelona Science Park (PCB) and the Barcelona City Council, with the support of Barcelona Activa and the collaboration of Biocat.
This June, the Barcelona Science Park (PCB), from the University of Barcelona (UB), and the Barcelona City Council have launched the acceleration program ‘BCN Health Booster’ to promote startups with an innovative business project within the field of healthcare. Biocat is collaborating in this initiative by offering business support for three years for the eleven innovative projects chosen. Plus, the chosen spinoffs and startups will have access to a PCB laboratory.
“Benchmark companies in the healthcare sector in Catalonia, like STAT-Diagnostica, Greenaltech, SomBiotech, Oryzon Genomics, Enantia and many others participated in the Park's past bio-incubators. We hope that this new accelerator promotes new projects that will become benchmarks a few years from now,” says Maria Terrades, the director of the Barcelona Science Park.
Companies less than 5 years old which develop pharmaceutical or biotech products or medical devices can access the BCN Health Booster accelerator, as well as service companies targeted at the healthcare sector that require the use of a laboratory to conduct their activity. The deadline to submit candidacies is September 17, 2021.
To choose the participants, an expert committee will evaluate the candidacies according to criteria of technical and economic feasibility, the developing team and the social impact of the entrepreneurial project, prioritizing spinoffs from public research centers, hospitals, and universities.
The president of Barcelona Activa and Lieutenant Mayor for Economy, Work, Competitiveness and Tax, Jaume Collboni, sees this collaboration project with different benchmark scientific entities as “an opportunity to retain this sector's talent in the city.” Collboni recalled that “the life sciences account for 7.3% of our GDP and employ around 230,000 people. The growth model of the life sciences and healthcare is based on excellence, education, innovation, and entrepreneurship.”
As a project partner, Biocat will offer the chosen companies a business mentoring program fully adapted to the needs or challenges that each one is facing during this period, which will include personalized mentoring and advisement; training (customer discovery, intellectual property, market access, regulatory affairs, etc.); and advisement on access to funding, such as preparing the pitch, the one-pager, and the brochure and participating in the Health & Bio Team Dating and Investment Readiness Series (TIRS) programs organized by Biocat.
The director of Innovation at Biocat, Núria Martí, has acknowledged that “this initiative will provide the startups with the tools, knowledge, personalized mentoring, and access to international investors to promote their business development and accelerate their time to market. All these activities are strategic within Biocat’s mission of maximizing the economic and social impact of the BioRegion.”