Are you a small bio-based UK business struggling to break your way into the industry? Do you need funding, advice and the suitable resources to succeed? Then Bio-start was designed with you in mind. This competition was inspired to solve global problems through synthetic biology. Bio-start seeks applications in healthcare, agritech, clean tech, industrial biotech or any sector where engineering DNA is an essential component and makes use of synthetic biology.
This annual competition was is launched by SynbiCITE and Rainbow Seed Fund designed to commercialise engineering biology to help deliver change. Bio-start encourages applications that will allow the UK bio-based economy to grow and thrive. The winner will receive a package worth £200,000.
- £100k equity free cash prize
- Six months’ free laboratory space
- £25k consumables
- £15k professional services
There will be additional lab space with access to the London DNA Foundry. The competition will also provide access into an accelerator programme with expert mentors and partners to support teams commercialise their ideas.
Co-founder Dr Stephen Chambers, CEO of SynbiCITE, said: “This is a first in the UK for synthetic biology and our aim is to help as many companies and entrepreneurs as we can. Once applications have been assessed up to twenty-five companies will go through our ten-week boot-camp and mentoring programme. Up to ten of these companies will go through to the final awards evening where they’ll have a chance to pitch their ideas to an expert panel in front of an audience of investors and industry leaders.”
How to apply:
- Registrations must be made by midnight on 17th December 2016 using the application form on the website and completed entries must be submitted by midnight on 31st December 2016. Applicants must submit a summary of the idea and the team members on an official entry form. Up to 25 entrants will be selected by independent assessors to enter Stage 2. Applications are open to anyone willing to work with the UK and do not need to be in a company to enter.
- Boot camp & Mentoring: February – April 2017. The competition starts with a one-day boot camp of workshops and a networking session for teams and mentors to meet. Working with their mentors, teams develop the business plan and pitch deck. Teams self-managed, scheduling a minimum one hour per week with mentors. 2–3 mentors are allocated to each team by the competition.
- Semi-Final Competition Submissions and Finals Judging at the Award Ceremony: May 2017. Teams work up a 10-slide pitch and a 5-page business plan. Of the 25 teams from stage 2, up to 10 semi-finalist are chosen to enter the final.
- Final judging: Selection of the winning entry will be made by an expert panel to which the semi-finalists will present. All semi-finalists present at the final award ceremony, where the winner will be announced!
Oliver Sexton, Investment Director at Rainbow Seed Fund, added: “Bio-start ( @ ) is a significant opportunity for entrepreneurs working in this burgeoning sector. We’re confident about the UK’s strength in synthetic biology and believe there is potential to build world-class companies in the UK. Bio-start is an important element in our strategy of helping develop this promising sector.”
Why get involved? The potential growth in this industry is huge but challenging. This competition is designed for people looking to challenge themselves in a fast-paced start-up environment to make a difference. The winner will find themselves helping to solve prominent global problems with biological engineering. For more information click here.
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