What is the importance of entrepreneurship within life sciences sphere?

How is the public and private sector partnership addressing
the challenges faced by the drug research and development community?

When the
Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI), a joint undertaking between the European Union (EU) and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA), was launched in 2008, some wondered if it would be possible to create successful innovation networks of academics, researchers from industry, SMEs, patient groups and regulators. Today, it is a reality with 42 projects launched since inception and a budget of €2 billion.

On 18 February 2014, in Brussels, Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) and the International Venture Club (IVC) will unite a group of leading international life science investors with health entrepreneurs, big pharmas, and specialist SMEs, who have proven unique value through their participation in an IMI project.

The agenda includes:
  • a panel discussion with investment specialists from big pharma about future opportunities for SMEs in the new model for investment;
  • presentations covering IMI’s SMEs success stories and Horizon 2020 opportunities for SMEs;
  • networking opportunities;
  • dedicated, pre-scheduled private exploratory meetings.
About Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI)
With a €2 billion budget, the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) is the world’s largest public-private partnership in health. Through its collaborative projects that bring together experts from industry, academia, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), patient groups, and regulators, IMI aims to develop tools and technologies that will speed up the development of safer and better drugs for patients.

IMI has launched 42 projects to date. Some projects focus on specific health issues such as neurological conditions (Alzheimer’s disease, schizophrenia, depression, chronic pain, autism), diabetes, lung disease, oncology, inflammation & infection, tuberculosis, and obesity. Others focus on broader challenges in drug development like drug and vaccine safety, knowledge management, the sustainability of chemical drug production, the use of stem cells for drug discovery, drug behaviour in the body, the creation of a European platform to discover novel medicines, and tackling antimicrobial resistance. In addition to its research projects, IMI supports a number of education and training projects.

About the International Venture Club (IVC)
The International Venture Club (IVC) is a global collaborative network of independent, corporate and institutional investors with a focus on the European venture market. The Club was founded in 2011 by a group of senior executives with the aim to foster personal relations among decision makers and build bridges across industries and investor types. Its objectives are to, 1) share better practices, 2) build co-investor trust and relations, 3) foster new funding and investment opportunities through joint actions and PR, 4) grow promising companies with corporate partners and co-investors, and 5) keep a smart window and support to emerging innovative companies.