SR One launches £100,000 competition for young medtech entrepreneurs

28 January 2012

Venture capital firm SR One has launched a £100,000 competition to encourage young biotechnology and medical technology entrepreneurs in Europe. It is being run in association with Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable and Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst,

The competition, called OneStart, is a business plan competition designed to inspire and encourage its participants to become the next generation of European bio-entrepreneurs. The £100,000 winner-takes-all prize will be the largest of its kind in the world. Uniquely, OneStart will actively connect individuals from a range of institutions and backgrounds.

OneStart is open to aspiring life science entrepreneurs age 35 and younger who are studying or working in Europe. The competition will be run in stages and cover four tracks: drug discovery, medical devices, diagnostics and health information technology. The competition will team up those who have developed a technology or idea, such as academics, with individuals who have complementary backgrounds and skills, e.g. business school students, or young professionals from pharma or biotech.

A semi-final workshop day will be run on March 16, at which teams will be given access to mentors and other resources and have the opportunity to network with leading pharmaceutical companies, venture capitalists, advisory firms and each other. A judging panel of experts will select the ultimate winner from a shortlist of finalists in May. The prize will be awarded to the most commercially compelling business plan with the potential to impact the lives of patients through innovation in medical care.

The prize money will be used to fund further development of the winning plan towards a value inflection point, at which it will be better placed to raise further funding from financial investors. The winner will also be offered a support package provided by Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst, which includes access to laboratory space. Additional financial support is provided by GlaxoSmithKline, Roche and Covington & Burling LLP.

"We believe that there is a significant opportunity to unlock more commercial potential from the world-leading science currently being developed in Europe," said Jens Eckstein, president of SR One. "Business school students represent another large untapped resource for life science entrepreneurship. Linking them directly with academics will provide a broader range of complementary skills and an opportunity for valuable knowledge transfer between team members."

Further information

Information about the competition, including the online application, is available at: 

SR One is the independent corporate venture capital arm of GlaxoSmithKline:

Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable is the largest student-led entrepreneurial organization in the UK devoted to the life-sciences:

Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst is the UK's first open innovation bioscience campus. 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 former East of England Development Agency:


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