Leading research commercialisation body joins forces with partners to support emerging hea...

PraxisUnico, the leading research commercialisation body, has joined forces with Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst (SBC) - the UK’s first open innovation bioscience campus – and the Technology Strategy Board to deliver a seminar and networking forum to support aspiring entrepreneurs and young healthcare businesses.

The aim is to provide an insight into how to start-up, fund and grow innovative new companies.

Speaking of the event to be held on 1 March 2012, SBC Chief Executive Officer, Dr Martino Picardo said, “Start-ups in the UK life sciences sector are always in need of practical support and guidance, even with recent encouraging developments such as the Government’s pledge of support via the £180 million Biomedical Catalyst fund. This forum for young and emerging health businesses will enable delegates to hear first-hand from those who have faced similar challenges to grow new ideas into successful businesses.”

Event presenters include keynote speaker Dr Ian Tomlinson of GlaxoSmithKline, David Philips of SR One, Simon Tate of Convergence Pharmaceuticals, plus others who are able to advise on what makes a fundable company, how to tap into Technology Strategy Board programmes, making the best use of R&D tax credits for SMEs, and setting up biotechnology companies.

Dr Douglas Robertson, PraxisUnico Chair, added, “Universities spin-out a healthy number of companies but unless these companies grow and prosper then UK plc will not benefit. PraxisUnico welcomes the opportunity to deliver this event with support from SBC. The growth of this community will in turn improve the flow of research by PraxisUnico members for social and economic impact.”

The event location also offers delegates the opportunity to tour the newly opened Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst (SBC). This £38m independent bioscience facility development is a joint venture between the Department of Business, Innovation & Skills, GlaxoSmithKline, the Wellcome Trust, the East of England Development Agency and the Technology Strategy Board.

The forum is also supported by Technology Strategy Board, in association with GlaxoSmithKline and Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst.

For further information visit www.praxisunico.org.uk

For further information:
Lee Willmott, Communications Officer, +44 (0)1223 659952, lee.willmott@praxisunico.org.uk
Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst
Emma Palmer Foster, Strategic Communications Consultant, +44 (0) 7880 787185,

Additional information

Young & Emerging Healthcare Businesses – Delivering the future
Date: 1 March 2012
Location: GlaxoSmithKline R&D, Medicines Research Centre, Stevenage

For further information:

About PraxisUnico

PraxisUnico is a not-for-profit educational organisation set up to support innovation and commercialisation of public sector and charity research for social and economic impact. PraxisUnico encourages innovation and acts as a voice for the research commercialisation profession, facilitating the interaction between the public sector research base, business and government. PraxisUnico provides a forum for best practice exchange, underpinned by first-class training and development programmes.

PraxisUnico is the UK’s leading research commercialisation association.

About Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst
Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst is the UK‘s first open innovation bioscience campus, pioneering a unique culture to drive early stage drug discovery and development. It is backed by £38m of funding from its founding partners – GlaxoSmithKline, the Wellcome Trust, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the Technology Strategy Board and the East of England Development Agency open from Q1 2012, buildings in Phase 1 of the development consist of an Incubator, an Accelerator and a Hub, covering 60,000 sq ft of laboratory, office and networking space.

The independent facility is expected to house a range of companies, from virtual and start-up firms to those which are more established. Located on the GlaxoSmithKline Stevenage site, Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst is in the unique position of operating in proximity to the expertise and resources of a major pharmaceutical company, close to both London and Cambridge. For more information, please go to www.stevenagecatalyst.com.

About the Technology Strategy Board
The Technology Strategy Board works to drive economic growth by making the UK a global leader in innovation. Established by the government, the Technology Strategy Board helps business to innovate faster and more effectively than would otherwise be possible. It uses its expertise, connections and funding to enable collaborations and partnerships between businesses, researchers and government, and to help business to create innovative products and services which will meet market needs, tackle the challenges of our time and build the economy of tomorrow.

About GlaxoSmithKline
GSK aims to improve the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer. This mission gives us the purpose to develop innovative medicines and products that help millions of people around the world. Every hour we spend more than £300,000 (US$562,000) in our search for new medicines that can make a difference to patients. We are one of the pharmaceutical industry leaders, with an estimated seven per cent of the world's pharmaceutical market and one of the few companies researching both medicines and vaccines for the World Health Organization‘s three priority diseases – HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. As a company with a firm foundation in science, we have a flair for research and a track record of turning that research into powerful, marketable drugs.

About the Wellcome Trust
The Wellcome Trust is a global charitable foundation dedicated to achieving extraordinary improvements in human and animal health. It supports the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities. The Trust’s breadth of support includes public engagement, education and the application of research to improve health. It is independent of both political and commercial interests. www.wellcome.ac.uk

About EEDA
EEDA's mission has been to improve the economy of the East of England through helping businesses prosper, supporting people to be the best they can and breathing new life into places. Working with others we have helped improve the lives of thousands of people with investments that will continue to have an impact for decades to come. EEDA works across the six counties of Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Suffolk , and unitary authorities of Central Bedfordshire, Bedford , Luton, Peterborough , Southend-on-Sea and Thurrock. In the Emergency Budget of 22 June 2010, the government confirmed its intention to abolish all regional development agencies (RDAs) and replace them with Local Enterprise Partnerships. EEDA will close by March 2012. Visit www.eeda.org.uk to find out more.

About the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) is building a dynamic and competitive UK economy by: creating the conditions for business success; promoting innovation, enterprise and science; and giving everyone the skills and opportunities to succeed. To achieve this it will foster world-class universities and promote an open global economy. BIS - Investing in our future. 

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