Massive lift for Danish life science
The Novo Nordisk Foundation has announced a plan to inject more than 50 million Euro into creating new life science companies. Starting January 2018 they will establish the “Bio Innovation Institute” (BII) a major research, acceleration and incubation centre to be located in Copenhagen Science City. BII is a long-term initiative of 10 years and the Novo Nordisk Foundation has awarded a grant of DKK 392 million to cover the 3-year-long establishment phase.
Develop ideas to attract capital
Research in the life sciences in Denmark has a high international level, but the Novo Nordisk Foundation feels that many research ideas and results are not implemented because of a lack of development facilities, experienced personnel and access to capital. The Novo Nordisk Foundation wants to change this by helping the most talented researchers and entrepreneurs in developing and maturing research projects to a point at which they can attract capital on market terms.
“The purpose is to support innovative entrepreneurs and talented researchers in further developing research projects to achieve new solutions that can potentially combat disease, improve health or conserve natural resources to benefit people and society as a whole,” says Sten Scheibye, Chairman of the Board, Novo Nordisk Foundation.
Within walking distance of strong life science players
BII is a Danish initiative with an international perspective. It will be located in Copenhagen Bioscience Park (COBIS) to create synergy with existing research environments and laboratory facilities. COBIS is located centrally in Copenhagen Science City, where University of Copenhagen faculties of SCIENCE and Health and Medical Sciences is within walking distance of University Hospital Rigshospitalet and Metropolitan University College, all of which have strong positions in the life sciences. Thomas Bjørnholm, Chairman of Copenhagen Science City says:
“BII will no doubt be a powerhouse for Danish Life Science Innovation and we are proud to house it. All Copenhagen Science city-partners welcome the opportunities BII will present to further strengthen collaborative ties with national and international companies and academic institutions”
Hoping to become Northern European powerhouse
It is the hope of the Novo Nordisk Foundation that the BioInnovation Institute will highlight Denmark as a strong powerhouse in northern Europe for maturing research and start-ups in the life sciences.
“Danish and international investors will perceive the life sciences in Denmark as an attractive field for investment. This will enable the solutions developed to benefit everyone and to create new companies and jobs in the long term”, says Sten Scheibye.
Birgitte Nauntofte, CEO, Novo Nordisk Foundation continues: “Our role will be to help build the bridges between research and new discoveries and solutions that can benefit people. We support researchers with knowledge, expertise and risk capital at an early and decisive time,” says Nauntofte.