The Slovenia Times

Labena Ventures to foster biotech, pharmacy and healthcare ideas

Science & Technology

Labena, a Ljubljana-based family-run business, is launching a new platform to link start-up companies and disruptive ideas with venture capital and investment funds in medicine, biotechnology and the food and pharmaceutical industries. More than €100 million will be available, with applications expected from 14 March.

Incorporated in 1993, Labena has been active in market segments in the pharmaceutical, medical, food and petrochemical industries and in R&D in academic institutions. Their services are used by global pharmaceutical products.

They are now launching Labena Ventures, a platform aiming to link up ideas, projects and start-ups with investors in order to invest in projects that have the potential for global growth.

Labena says there is an increasing number of young people, start-ups, students and researchers, as well as universities and institutes that make new discoveries, but their ideas get shelved or do not go beyond being published in a scientific journal.

"We would like to see such projects, ideas and initiatives applied in practice, so they can contribute to faster development in biotechnology, the pharmaceutical industry and healthcare," said Labena director Borut Čeh at a presentation in Ljubljana last week.

Their accelerator Labena Ventures will provide a space for testing ideas that individuals, startups and universities and other institutions can put into practice and commercialise. "We will help them to properly prepare and thus increase their chances of winning an investment," said Čeh.

Labena Ventures is the only accelerator of its kind that covers several countries and operates in several regions - Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Albania and the former Yugoslav republics.

More than €100 million will be available through special funds, the company announced, adding that a special commission would select up to 40 projects from the applications, which can be submitted starting from 14 March.

Representatives of the selected projects will then attend training sessions to gain business and presentation skills and learn how to strategically position their ideas or projects in the market.

"A mentorship programme will also be available, featuring 80 certified mentors from all over the world and from various fields of business, finance, biotechnology, etc.," said Labena project and business development manager Boštjan Čeh.


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