Start Codon will identify and recruit potential life science companies to enter a six-month accelerator program, which will provide seed-funding up to £250,000 ($323,380).
Additionally, the accelerator program will provide the selected companies access to the resources of the Cambridge Cluster, a region around Cambridge, UK, that is home to a hub of high-tech businesses focusing on biotechnology. The accelerator aims to prepare companies for a successful Series A fundraising.
Jason Mellad, CEO of Start Codon, told us that the company’s founders all independently identified a significant challenge faced by today’s life science startups.
“Too often, high potential innovations flounder during the earliest phases of development due to poor product-market fit, technical challenges or lack of commercial expertise,” Mellad suggested.
Start Codon’s founders include the Cambridge Innovation Capital, Babraham Bioscience Technologies, Genentech, Jonathan Milner of the Cambridge Innovation Group, and Ian Tomlinson of Apollo Therapeutics, who will serve as chairman of the Start Codon board.
Mellad further said that Start Codon, “Leverages the wealth of commercial and scientific know-how in Cambridge to help young companies fundraise successfully and realise their full potential.”
Despite the specter of Brexit, the interest in investing into the UK biotech industry is growing – a report released last month by the BioIndustry Association (BIA) found that funding into the sector had grown by 40%, year on year.
During 2018, BIA also revealed that the UK was some way ahead of the next European country when it came to raising funds, by collectively raising £1.1bn.