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April 21, 2014

34 Biotech and Pharma Incubators

Find out where life science innovations are hatched.

34 Biotech and Pharma Incubators

These are places where startups get started, along with community labs where anyone can conduct research. [© pressmaster - Fotolia.com]

  • Apple and Microsoft started out in garages, but a biopharma startup cannot follow suit. Not when there’s equipment like centrifuges, water baths, and, increasingly, sequencers that have to be used, and have to go somewhere.

    Increasingly in recent years, that somewhere is a specialized space for startups. Typically they are called incubators; some are called accelerators, and a few have alphanumeric appellations like HTI and QB3. Then there’s another alphanumeric, “DIY,” as in do-it-yourself—these are community labs that have begun popping up over the past couple of years, designed for both the citizen scientist and the professional researcher, usually offering programs and classes—and most importantly, access to a lab—at lower costs than traditional incubators.

    Another twist on the traditional incubator has been the startup spaces opened in recent years by big biopharmas including Bayer’s CoLaborator, and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen Labs. J&J itself works with early-stage companies through its Innovation Centers worldwide. Merck & Co. has taken another approach, contributing big bucks ($90 million, to be exact) toward the California Institute for Biomedical Research (Calibr). And in November, Celgene announced plans to house in part of its San Francisco space startups funded by Versant Ventures under a collaboration with Toronto’s Blueline Bioscience.

    Following is a list of 33 incubators serving biotechnology and pharmaceutical startups, unranked and listed in alphabetical order, and based on information furnished by the companies on their websites and other publicly available material, including their LinkedIn and Twitter pages and press announcements. Each incubator is listed with its address, phone number, website address, manager or other contact person where disclosed, a description of its space, its number of companies where disclosed, and access afforded companies to resources beyond lab equipment.

  • Accelerator

    Address: 1616 Eastlake Ave. E., Suite 200, Seattle, WA 98102

    Phone number: (206) 957-7300

    Website: www.acceleratorcorp.com

    Contact person: Thong Q. Le, CEO

    Space: 18,000 square feet in Seattle’s South Lake Union life science cluster, owned and operated by Alexandria Real Estate Equities. Includes shared spaces, offices, shared core facilities, digital conference and meeting rooms, and creative lounge areas.

    Number of companies: Formed and invested in 12 companies over the past 10 years by raising more than $40 million in committed capital. Five of the companies have emerged from the Accelerator and raised follow on financings of more than $171 million. Three companies remain under management at Accelerator. In all, Accelerator companies have raised in excess of $220 million in initial and follow-on financings.

    Resources: Access to resources of operator Accelerator Corp., which include committed investment capital, facilities, scientific, and technical expertise and support, and start-up management.

    Opened: 2003

  • Audubon Biomedical Science and Technology Park at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC)

    Address: 3960 Broadway, New York, NY 10032

    Phone number: (212) 851-5405

    Website: www.auduboncenter.org

    Contact person: Waveney Golbourne, administrative manager

    Number of companies: 13 current biotech tenants; 46 new companies.

    Audubon Business and Technology Center (the Mary Woodard Lasker Biomedical Research Building)
    Space: 100,000 gross square feet
    Opened: 1995

    Russ Berrie Medical Science Pavilion
    Space: 175,000 gross square feet
    Opened: 1997

    Irving Cancer Research Center
    Space: 304,000 gross square feet.
    Opened: 2005

    Resources: Access to CUMC’s Augustus C. Long Health Sciences Library and Columbia University facilities (may require fees), including: Cancer Center Advanced Optical Microscopy Center for Radiological Research Design and Instrument Shop, DNA Analysis and Sequencing Facility, Flow Cytometry Facility, Health Sciences Library, Protein Chemistry and DNA Sequencing Core Facility, Mass Spectrometry Facility, NMR Spectroscopy Facility.

    Two additional buildings are planned, one 280,000 square feet on a New York City-owned site adjacent to the Audubon Business and Technology Center, the other an academic research building of 237,000 square feet adjacent to the Russ Berrie Medical Science Pavilion.

  • Bayer CoLaborator

    Address: 455 Mission Bay Blvd., South San Francisco, CA 94158

    Phone number: Unavailable; inquiries are referred to [email protected]

    Website: www.colaborator.bayer.com/en/home/index.php

    Contact person: Christopher Haskell, Ph.D., head, U.S. Science Hub, Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals

    Space: 6,000 square feet of shared, rented assigned lab bench, furnished office space using open floor plan with cubicles, shared equipment, and common research areas. Designed for startup life-science companies whose technology platforms, drug targets or drug candidates may align with Bayer’s interests. Housed in the same building as Bayer’s U.S. Innovation Center, the company’s North American center of research.

    Number of companies: Two tenants listed online.

    Resources: Access to Bayer support, including Environmental Health & Safety and Biosafety licenses, and access to nearby UCSF core services such as imaging, bioinformatics, and proteomics. Partnering with Bayer can also provide access to the global expertise and equipment of Bayer’s research network. Access to BayBio and QB3 programs to assist with small biotech businesses.

    Opened: 2012

  • Berkeley BioLabs

    Address: 626 Bancroft Way, Building 3, Suite B, Berkeley, CA 94710

    Phone number: Unavailable; inquiries are referred to [email protected]

    Website: berkeleybiolabs.com

    Contact person: Space queries to Ryan Bethencourt, co-founder; scientific queries to Ron Shigeta, Ph.D

    Space: 4,000 square feet of biotech lab space for both proto companies and individual scientists who want to get to their proof of concept quickly.

    Number of companies: No companies listed online.

    Resources: Access to events and classes, as well as 10 “biohackers-in-residence,” citizen or do-it-yourself (DIY) scientists studying research topics in bioscience.

    Opened: January 23, 2014

  • Bio, Tech & Beyond

    Address: 2351 Faraday Ave., Carlsbad, CA 92008 (within the Carlsbad Research Center)

    Phone number: (803) 239-7960

    Website: biotechnbeyond.com

    Contact person: Joseph Jackson and Kevin Lustig, chief management officers

    Space: More than 6,000 square feet of community biology lab space in a space leased from the City of Carlsbad, CA for $1/year; In return, Bio, Tech and Beyond committed to providing community science education opportunities, growing membership to 50 people in the first year and launching eight startups in the first two years.

    Resources: All intellectual property rights are retained by the researcher or inventor.

    Opened: 2013

  • BioCurious

    Address: 845 Stewart Drive, Suite C Sunnyvale, CA 94085

    Phone number: (408) 475-2246

    Website: biocurious.org

    Contact person: Raymond McCauley, co-founder and chief architect

    Space: 2,600 square feet consisting of a complete working laboratory (BSL-1) and technical library.

    Resources: Access for entrepreneurs to cheaply accessed equipment, materials, and co-working space, as well as a training center for biotechniques emphasizing safety, and to a meeting place for citizen scientists, hobbyists, activists, and students. BioCurious was developed as a community biology lab for amateurs, inventors, entrepreneurs, and “anyone who wants to experiment”.

    Opened: 2011

  • BioHealth Innovation (BHI) Incubator

    Address: 22 Baltimore Road, Rockville, MD 10850

    Phone number: (301) 637-6439

    Website: www.biohealthinnovation.org

    Contact person: Richard Bendis, president and CEO

    Space: Square footage unavailable, but includes co-working space.

    Number of companies: Focuses on serving companies in a variety of health-related technologies that include biotechnology and biopharma by accelerating and facilitating technology transfer and commercialization of market-relevant research in federal labs, universities, and biohealth companies in central Maryland.

    Resources: Access to BHI’s preferred providers of various business services through the BHI Startup Package, as well as to commercialization support through its Entrepreneur-In-Residence program. Each company initially screened by BHI’s team of executives-in-residence, then receives support toward a milestone-based business development plan.

    Opened: Year opened unavailable

  • BioScience Laboratories

    Address: 665 3rd Street, Suite 250 San Francisco, CA 94107-1953

    Phone number: (415) 495-5570

    Website: www.biosciencelaboratories.com

    Contact person: Connie John, founder

    Space: 5,000 square feet in facility established by MandalMed to provide shared wet and dry lab space, equipment, and management for virtual and early-stage life science companies. Potential operations include Molecular diagnostics, biotechnology tools, bioanalytical services, early-stage therapeutics, and stem cell companies.

    Number of companies: 12 current companies or “clients” listed online.

    Resources: Access to management services agreements, conference rooms, safety training; confidentiality agreements with all clients.

    Opened: 2005

  • BioSquare Discovery and Innovation Center

    Address: 650 Albany St., Boston, MA 02118

    Phone number: (617) 358-5024

    Website: www.biosquare.org/bdic/BDIC.html

    Contact person: Jack Cohan, manager

    Space: 12,500 square feet including individual biomedical laboratory facilities. Flexible, short-term space arrangements available from six months to two years.

    Number of companies: Unavailable.

    Resources: Access to biomedical research support services including conventional animal and transgenic facilities; medical campus library with thousands of online journals.

    Opened: Year opened unavailable

  • California Institute for Biomedical Research (Calibr)

    Address: 11119 North Torrey Pines Road, Suite 100, La Jolla, CA 92037

    Phone number: (858) 242-1000

    Website: calibr.org  

    Contact person: Peter G. Schultz, Ph.D, director of Calibr and professor of chemistry at The Scripps Research Institute

    Space: 50,000 square feet of labs. Calibr is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit institute to which Merck has committed $90 million over seven years. In return, Merck will hold options to obtain exclusive commercial licenses to any proteins or small molecule therapeutic candidates resulting from Calibr research.

    Number of companies: No companies listed since Calibr carries out research to preclinical proof of concept, at which stage commercial partnerships will be sought for further development. Calibr is focused on research areas that include autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, cancer biology, regenerative medicine, neglected and orphan diseases, and neurobiology.

    Resources: Established collaborations with Merck, private foundations, and academic and other research institutions including Scripps and UC San Diego School of Medicine.

    Opened: 2012

  • Cambridge Biolabs

    Address: One Kendall Square, Suite 2203, Bldg. 200, Cambridge, MA, 02139

    Phone number: (617) 945-2014

    Website: www.cambridgebiolabs.com

    Contact person: Johannes Fruehauf, M.D., Ph.D., founder and president

    Space: Square footage unavailable; laboratory and service company. Includes Biocloud™, which provides 20 individual lab bays designed for single scientists, with support infrastructure including central supply solutions, waste removal and required permitting.

    Number of companies: 15 resident companies or “clients” listed online.

    Resources: Access to financial and legal support provided via investment firm BioInnovation.

    Opened: 2010

  • CONNECT Springboard and Capital Competition

    Address: 8950 Villa La Jolla Drive, Suite A124, La Jolla, CA 92037

    Phone number: (858) 964-1301

    Website: connect.org/entrepreneurs/springboard

    Contact people: Brittney Sabbah, program manager (Springboard and Capital Competition), Steve Hoey, director, business creation and development, and Ruprecht von Buttlar, VP, business creation and development (Springboard)

    Resources: Springboard program assists companies in proving their business model and developing a compelling commercialization strategy. Holds four six-month tracks per year. Access to assigned expert business advisors who coach the company throughout the process, as well as to feedback from financial, marketing, legal and commercialization experts, advice from industry executives, and the opportunity to dry run presentations and pitches. After completing Springboard, startups deemed suitable and ready for investment by angels, venture capital and/or corporate investors move on to the Springboard Capital Competition, where the startups pitch to a panel of C-level industry experts in a final judging panel. Capital competition winners become CONNECT Portfolio Companies, eligible to present in the region’s year round investor forums. Springboard is open for enrollment to biopharma and other life sciences companies in Southern California, as well as the region’s other technology companies.

    Opened: 2005

  • CreaGen Chemistry Incubator (C2I) – A Division of CreaGen Biosciences

    Address: 23 Rainin Road, Woburn, MA 01801

    Phone number: (781) 938-1122

    Website: creagenchemincubator.com

    Contact person: Raj (SB) Rajur, chairman and CEO

    Space: 7,000 square feet of private and shared lab bench space for 30 scientists, plus 10,000 square feet of office, kitchen/dining, and conference room space. Includes biology lab, and three chemistry labs.

    Number of companies: Five current companies, two alumni companies listed online.

    Resources: Access to services of CreaGen Biosciences, which include traditional, structure-based drug design and high-throughput parallel synthesis and purification for lead generation and optimization, process research, and scale-up chemistry.

    Opened: 2012

  • Genspace

    Address: 33 Flatbush Ave., 7th floor, Brooklyn, NY 11217

    Phone number: (347) 470-1265

    Website: genspace.org

    Contact person: Ellen D. Jorgensen, Ph.D., president and co-founder

    Space: 600 square feet of lab space used as a community biology laboratory (BSL-1) and teaching site by nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting citizen science and access to biotechnology.

    Resources: Access to adult education and outreach events; most recent courses included “biotechnology crash course,” an intro to synthetic biology, and biohacker boot camp. Genspace was the first-ever community biotechnology laboratory.

    Opened: 2010

  • Harlem Biospace (Hb)

    Address: 423 West 127th Street, New York, NY 10027

    Phone number: Unavailable; inquiries are directed to [email protected]

    Website: harlembiospace.com

    Contact person: Samuel Sia, Ph.D., associate professor of biomedical engineering at Columbia University, and wife Christine Kovich, co-founders

    Space: 2,300 square feet of shared wet-lab space for competitively-selected entrants.

    Number of companies: 18 startups listed online. Does not seek equity in startups.

    Resources: Access to one-on-one guidance with leading mentors, investors, and practitioners, as well as Hb’s community of biotech entrepreneurs, events, and classes.

    Opened: 2013

  • Helix Center Biotech Incubator

    Address: 1100 Corporate Square Drive, Creve Coeur, MO 63132

    Phone number: (314) 432-2672

    Website: www.helixcenter.com

    Contact person: Karen Hart, site administrator

    Space: 33,000 square feet of wet and dry lab space and offices—including 12 wet labs plus future build-out plans for four wet/dry labs. Incubator is geared toward fast-growing companies and entrepreneurs in the early stages of research in the plant and life sciences and in the commercialization of new technologies. Sponsored by the St. Louis County Economic Council in conjunction with the Helix Fund.

    Number of companies: 13 member companies listed online.

    Resources: Access to scientific and business resources through major research centers at Washington University in St. Louis, Saint Louis University, and University of Missouri-St. Louis, plus other higher education institutions and entrepreneurship programs. Resources include greenhouses and specialized equipment at nearby facilities—microscopy, proteomics and mass spectrometry, tissue culture and plant transformation—as well as the intellectual capital of top scientists.

    Opened: 2012

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