This week, the Israel Innovation Authority launched a new competitive tender to open its second biotech incubator. The Authority’s technological start-up incubators have proven themselves as an important tool for creating innovative companies in a variety of fields. This additional biotech incubator will serve as a gateway for multinational pharmaceutical companies and specialist investment funds to support Israeli start-ups.
Israeli Minister of Economy and Industry, Eli Cohen, said, “We attribute great importance to understanding the needs of the hi-tech industry, adapting programs to these needs, and developing technology. Our job is first and foremost to serve the industry and enable it to develop and receive the optimal support needed to succeed. This is another part of the ongoing “Northern Plan” which will reach NIS 920 million by the end of 2018.”
Aharon Aharon, CEO of the Israel Innovation Authority, said, “In Israel’s northern region, research infrastructure, relevant services and a vast potential of human capital are emerging. These basic assets – together with a biotech incubator that will help establish new startups –will make it possible to create an important ecosystem in the field and to strengthen the pharmaceutical industry in Israel.”
Following the government’s decision that the Authority examine the possibility of establishing a biotech incubator in the north, the board of the Israel Innovation Authority decided to initiate a new competitive tender to establish a second biotechnological incubator, following the success of the previous tender won by FutuRX. The goal of the biotech incubator is to help build the pharmaceutical industry in Israel by connecting investors and strategic partners who can help identify innovative technological projects and help transform them into new companies. The program is undergoing an approval process as mandated by law.
The first tender brought two multinational corporations to Israel: Johnson & Johnson from the US and Takeda from Japan, together with the long-established venture capital fund OrbiMed. The FutuRx incubator has already invested in establishing 10 startups, and the complementary capabilities of multinational corporations along with a venture capital fund have already proven to bring great value to startups – both within the incubator and after the companies leave.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)