Train – Pitch- Meet – Training and Selection of Europe’s best Biotech Startups

On October 4-6, BioRN, together with EIT Health, organized the Biotech Semifinal of the European Health Catapult. The Biotech semifinal consisted of two training days on October 4/5 at the Hotel Villa Toscana in Leimen|Heidelberg and one competition day on October 6 at the Studio Villa Bosch in Heidelberg.

13 innovative start-up teams from all over Europe (9 countries) were participating: Affichem, Elthera AG, EVEXyS, LifeTag, Lumobiotics, Microbrain Biotech, Nanoligent, NoMicro, Peptomyc, SpyBiotech, SUN Bioscience, Prelife, Vitroscan.

The aim of the training days was to mentor and prepare the start-up teams in the topics of e.g. Drug Development and Regulatory Affairs, Business Plan Development, Financing, Marketing and Market Access, Negotiation and Intellectual Property (IP). 9 Experienced coaches and mentors/experts of different expertise coming from the healthcare industry or investment sector were passionate to advise the startups in intense one on one sessions during the two training days. The spirit during the semifinal was very supportive. The vivid exchange with peers and mentors generated an atmosphere of entrepreneurial spirit and support.

In addition, the start-ups were intensively prepared for their 5-min pitch presentation in front of the jury on October 6th. A professional pitch trainer was working intensively with the entrepreneurs on their presentation skills and pitch decks.

During the competition day on October 6 at the Studio Villa Bosch in Heidelberg, the 13 start-ups presented their innovative technologies and businesses in enthusiastic 5-minute live pitches. Renowned jury members with healthcare and biotech technology backgrounds, selected the 7 best Biotech start-ups in the European Health Catapult competition that will enter the next stage, the final during the EIT Health Summit in London on 4-5 December.

Around 60 participants including healthcare professionals and investors from the Venture Capital, Crowdinvestment, Business Angels and Family Office were participating in the event. In one on one meetings interested investors, leading healthcare professionals could meet up with the startups to discuss potential collaboration, investment or partnerships.

The selected 7 Finalists are (alphabetical order):

  • Affichem: Development of Dendrogenins for the prevention/treatment of deafness.
  • Elthera AG: Development of an antibody against the cancer treatment target L1CAM
  • LifeTag: Diagnostic solutions to detect chronic metabolic diseases.
  • Lumobiotics: Photoswitchable anticancer & antimicrobial peptide drugs.
  • Peptomyc: Myc inhibitor protein with cell penetrating properties for cancer treatment
  • SpyBiotech: Bacterial superglue technology to generate vaccines more quickly
  • SUN Bioscience: organoid culture platform for personalized treatment (cystic fibrosis)

The 7 finalists have now the chance to win prizes of: First prize 20.000 Euro, Second prize 15.000 Euro and third prize 10.000 Euro in the Biotech Category.

But the other semifinalists that haven’t won a ticket for the final in London are not leaving with empty hands. As a partner of the EIT Health Accelerator, Amazon Web Services provides all winners of regional EHC selection events (= EHC semi-finalists) with $100,000 in AWS Promotional Credit for 1 year (or $10,000 for 2 years) to get and test the right infrastructure needed for scaling and growing any size business. More information can be found at https://aws.amazon.com/activate at [Portfolio Plus]“. In addition, the alumni network of EIT Health will support all semi-finalists on their development path to success.

Another highlight of the event on October 6 was the keynote given by Sierk Poetting, the CFO of BioNTech, who was providing an overview of the Company´s strategy and its recent big successes. His advice to the young entrepreneurs was to believe in and be motivated by their science and technology, the rest will come along.

The European Health Catapult competition will run again in the next year and we are looking forward to meeting the next round of innovative pioneers. Please get in touch if you are interested to apply.

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