9. May 2013–
Health industry heavyweight Bayer HealthCare is keen to get closer to startups, with a just-announced incubator for young life science companies in Berlin and a new "Grants4Apps" scheme to fund healthcare apps in Germany.
The new CoLaborator incubator (similar to the one already set up in San Francisco) will be located close to Bayer's own R&D Centre in Wedding, Berlin, but in a separate building with office and laboratory space for up to ten startups. As we'd expect, Bayer HealthCare (a subgroup of Bayer AG) is interested in supporting startups working in complimentary areas to its own research and development.
In exchange for reasonable rent, ready-to-use labs and access to Bayer's resources, the German corporate giant will seek “preferred access to partner with the young companies” (likely with some form of investment during or after their period of stay).
“At the Bayer R&D site in Berlin, an environment will be created that offers young, innovative companies ideal conditions to develop their ideas to marketability,” Bayer HealthCare Head of External Innovation Technologies Stefan Jaroch said in a press statement (in German). “We want to help young entrepreneurs to test their creative ideas, to promote an exchange of views and participate in this inspiring environment.”
Bayer announced the new incubator during a recent media tour by Berlin Senator for Economy, Technology and Research Cornelia Yzer, who also spent 15 years as the head of pharmaceutical industry group VFA. She welcomed the initiative as a step to better integrate Berlin's life science community, which spans universities, research institutes, tech parks, the Charité and the Bayer R&D Centre.
A new incubator – and grants of up to €10,000 to go with it
Bayer also just went live with a second initiative – Grants4Apps, which will provide grants of up to €10,000 to developers and entrepreneurs working on healthcare apps in Germany. Founders and teams can submit projects up until 30th June 2013.
Examples of areas Bayer's interested in include:
- Patient compliance
- Healthcare professionals in clinical problem solving
- Diagnosis of medical conditions
- Women’s health
- Patient empowerment
- Over the counter products
- Oncology, gynaecology, cardiology, hematology, radiology
- Clinical trials
- Research laboratory work
Software solutions for any platform are eligible. Grants of either €5000 or €10,000 will be awarded at Bayer's discretion. After a contract is signed, awardees will need to present the results of two months of further development before the grant is paid out.
Other groups actively supporting health tech startups in Europe include Healthbox, a US-founded accelerator now offering a programme in London. One of the first companies to participate in the new programme is Germany's SOMA Analytics, a mobile app designed to act as an early warning system for stress.
Image credit: via Grants4Apps
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