Finland's first Life Science Accelerator started in Turku
The first Finnish accelerator with a Life Science focus has started its operations in Turku. The Life Science Accelerator aims to speed up the commercialization of innovations originating from university or hospital research, as well as to accelerate growth and internationalization of early-stage companies.
The Life Science Accelerator serves primarily innovations within pharma development, diagnostics and related areas, and is a new concept in Finland. It will also enhance university and hospital innovation processes from activation to identification of promising projects. The operational core is at a systematic development towards business derived goals, with strong emphasis on tailored, intensive mentoring and coaching of selected research groups as well as early stage growth companies.
“Besides effective coaching also networking with industry, financiers and peer actors both nationally and internationally is very essential. Network building is currently ongoing and we have for example a number of companies already involved. Also peer actor network has a key role in terms of collaboration on expertise, benchmarking and deal-flow assessment. We have already started cooperation with Uppsala Innovation Center and discussions with other relevant actors is ongoing”, says Tom Palenius, Head of Operations at the Life Science Accelerator.
The Life Science Accelerator initially starts as an ERDF-funded pilot project, running until end of 2018. The project will create a novel collaboration platform between universities, companies and development organizations in Southwest Finland to enable an efficient operational model for the Life Science Accelerator. The project is coordinated by Turku Science Park Oy in cooperation with Turku University of Applied Sciences Ltd, University of Turku, Southwest Finland Hospital District and Åbo Akademi University.
To start with, the target area for the Accelerator is primarily in Southwest Finland to gain experience. When moving forward the activities will cover entire Finland through national cooperation.
“Turku region is Finland's leading pharmaceutical and diagnostic development center of expertise. We want to do our part in the implementation of the National Growth Strategy for the Health sector to strengthen the competitiveness and growth of the industry. After the project, the collaboration model and the Life Science Accelerator will continue as an organic part of the innovation ecosystem”, says Niko Kyynäräinen, CEO at Turku Science Park Ltd.
Life Science Accelerator was introduced at the 10th annual HealthBIO seminar in September.
Tom Palenius, Head of Operations - Life Science Accelerator, Turku Science Park Ltd
Tel. +358 40 550 1126, E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Websites: lifesci.ac, www.turkusciencepark.com
Twitter: @LifeSciAc, @TkuSciencePark