BaseLaunch, the Basel Area-based incubator and accelerator that helps scientists and entrepreneurs launch exceptional biotech companies, today announces that Roche has become a founding partner in the next phase of its company building activities. With this commitment, Roche renews its partnership with BaseLaunch. In addition, BaseLaunch announces it has increased the funding available per venture to USD 0.5 million to support early-stage innovation.
During 2018 and 2019, BaseLaunch supported nine early therapeutic ventures which have raised a total of more than USD 100 million in equity capital from the US and European venture funds, thereby contributing to the life sciences ecosystem of the Basel Area. Recently, BaseLaunch has added another four ventures to its portfolio and has been instrumental in contributing to the development of six more ventures in the Basel Area.
BaseLaunch is operated by Basel Area Business & Innovation, the investment and innovation promotion agency of the Basel Area. During its first phase (2017-2019), BaseLaunch was supported by Roche, Novartis Venture Fund, Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, and Roivant Sciences. Now the second phase is gearing up with new commitments. Roche (SWX: RO) is the first partner to be announced; additional partners will be made public over the coming months.
Building on the success of the first phase, BaseLaunch’s second phase, whilst similar to the first in many respects, will:
-Increase the funding per venture to a maximum of USD 0.5 million (versus USD 0.25 million previously)
-Have a new, and an increased pool of partners
-Establish BaseLaunch as an “evergreen” permanent initiative
-Accept applications year-round, rather than once per year
Neil Goldsmith, Director of Strategy at BaseLaunch, commented: “We are delighted by Roche’s continued commitment to BaseLaunch and to the wider early stage life sciences ecosystem in the Basel Area. The support of our highly experienced partners will allow BaseLaunch to build on the success of recent years as we look to a sustainable future supporting the development of cutting-edge therapeutic ventures.”
James Sabry, Global Head of Roche Pharma Partnering, added: "We are very pleased to continue our commitment to BaseLaunch. Basel has always been home to great ideas and innovation and today it is a leading life sciences hub within Switzerland and globally. This investment builds on our commitment to driving scientific advances that will help patients live better lives."
In addition to financing support, BaseLaunch helps build out companies and teams from inception to a point where they can raise financing and enter strategic collaborations. Harnessing the Basel Area’s unique position as a global life sciences hub, as well as its rising popularity among investors, BaseLaunch is looking to attract the next generation of breakthrough companies and is now open for applications.
Dr. Christof Klöpper, CEO of Basel Area Business & Innovation, added: “The expertise of Basel Area Business & Innovation in supporting entrepreneurs, connecting innovators and help to build companies enables BaseLaunch to be extremely focused on the unmet needs of life sciences startups while at the same time contributing to the excellent Swiss innovation landscape