Post pandemic, this partnership between HKSTP and BIVF seems quite an ironic move as it marks a key milestone to drive Hong Kong’s biomedical technology development. Both local and global qualified startups in infectious diseases and immunology can apply for the same. Should the healthcare industry take this as a sign to make the healthcare industry resilient and combat ready to face whatever the future holds with respect to possibilities of any pandemic.
Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTP) announced recently that it is partnering with global research-driven biopharmaceutical leader, Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund Limited (BIVF) in a strategic co-incubation collaboration to promote and nurture startups in research and development for infectious diseases and immunology.
According to reports, HKSTP is dedicated to collaborating with sector leaders in building the strongest I&T eco-system to help startups via business development, mentorship, and investment initiatives.
Reportedly, this partnership between HKSTP and BIVF marks a key milestone to drive Hong Kong’s biomedical technology development. Moreover, both local and global qualified startups in infectious diseases and immunology can apply to the incubation programme to access the full capabilities of the HKSTP ecosystem and BIVF’s extensive biotech funding network. Additionally, incubatees can access one-on-one coaching and assessment to track key research milestones, while receiving expert guidance from HKSTP on commercialisation, manufacturing, scaling-up and marketing strategy to ensure successful innovation, plus vital funding opportunities and investment insight from BI.
“Hong Kong is now Asia’s largest and the world’s second largest fundraising hub for biotech. As HKSTP marks our 20th year of propelling success and innovation, our mission is to drive the growth of biotech to another level with world class leaders like BIVF. We will maximise the GBA growth opportunities for high-potential tech talents and early-stage startups to ensure the region emerges as a global I&T powerhouse,” Albert Wong, CEO of HKSTP, said in a statement.
“Our partnership with BIVF, provides early-stage startups and promising university spinoffs with vital support at the most critical stage of their long and challenging biotech innovation journey. Incubatees will have access to our Incu-Bio Programme, with total incubatees doubling up in the last five years. The startups can also access funding support of up to HK$6 million, with financial subsidies and upfront grants to cover regulatory activities such as clinical trials,” Dr. Grace Lau, Head of Institute for Translational Research of HKSTP, stated.
“The world has faced growing public health challenges in recent years. As Boehringer Ingelheim’s strategic investment arm, BIVF focuses on the development of new science in areas with huge unmet medical needs such as infectious diseases and immunology. The co-incubation program jointly initiated by HKSTP and BIVF will enable us to identify more breakthrough technologies in the early stage of development. With the funding and infrastructure support offered by HKSTP and BI‘s expertise and experiences in the successful development of breakthrough mediactions for patients, we foster the startup companies and bridge the gap between science and industry for the local ecosystem. We look forward to developing together with HKSTP next-generation therapies in the fields of infectious diseases and immunology with long term partnerships,” said Dr. Frank Kalkbrenner, Global Head of the BIVF.
“The innovation competency of biopharmaceuticals in Asia is rising quickly. To grab the opportunities in this market, Boehringer Ingelheim has set up the External Innovation Hub in China which brings our Research Beyond Borders, Business Development & Licensing and Venture Fund groups under one umbrella. Now we’re thrilled to see that the biopharmaceutical industry is picking up rapidly in the Guangdong–Hong Kong–Macau Greater Bay Area, it’s a great opportunity for us to partner with HKSTP to develop the local ecosystem, and further enhance China’s dual-circulation scheme. We hope to offer our continuous support to more home-grown innovations to be recognized on the global market and eventually benefit the patients worldwide.” said Mr. Felix Gutsche, President & CEO, Boehringer Ingelheim China.
According to reports, programme incubatees will also benefit from HKSTP’s rapidly-growing biotech R&D capabilities including the HKSTP Institute for Translational Research (ITR). This will enable biomedical startups to turn their innovative biomedical technologies to life-changing impact on patients and society.