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May 05, 2014

20 European Biopharma Incubators

Find out where startups get started in the EU.

20 European Biopharma Incubators

Germany houses three incubators that are on this list, including one based in Leipzig. Learn more about them and others below. [© steschum - Fotolia.com]

  • The European Union recognizes 24 official and working languages, yet many of them use the same English words, like “incubator” and “accelerator” and “innovation center” to communicate a business center dedicated to housing, equipping, funding, supporting, and/or just nurturing biotechnology and pharmaceutical startups.

    However similar their names, the places differ widely in what they offer startups—small or large space? Individual or common labs, or both? Give seed/early-stage money, or just refer startups to government programs or other sources of funds?

    Following is a list of 20 incubators serving biotechnology and pharmaceutical startups, unranked and listed in alphabetical order of country, 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.

  • Belgium

    Bio-incubator Leuven

    Address: Gaston Geenslaan 1, 3001 Leuven (Heverlee) (within Arenberg Science Park)

    Phone number: +32 16 75 13 00

    Website: www.bio-incubator.be

    Contact person: Michael De Blauwe, general manager

    Space: Joint venture between VIB, KU Leuven, and AVEVE group; 80,000 square feet, to be expanded with third building. Space consists of multifunctional ventilated office and L3 lab space, as well as general and technical, logistical, and environment-technical support, to young R&D intensive companies deemed to have high growth potential in life sciences. Includes of 12 “Bio-Incubator I” modules of 250 square meters (2,691 square feet), 24 “Bio-Incubator II” modules of 125 square meters (1,345 square feet) and another 24 “Bio-Incubator III” modules of 125 square meters (1,345 square feet). Coupling of multiple modules is possible.

    Number of companies: Eight resident companies and institutions listed online

    Resources: Access to support from a facility manager for technical and infrastructure needs; meeting rooms & facilities

    Opened: 2008; second building completed 2011

    Flemish Institute for Biotechnology (VIB) Bio-incubator Gent

    Address: Technologiepark 4, 9052 Gent (within Zwijnaarde Technology Park of the Ghent University)

    Phone number: +32 9 244 66 11

    Website: www.vib.be/en/business-opportunities/facilities-for-enterprises/Pages/Locations.aspx

    Contact person: Dirk Iserentant, invention analyst, VIB

    Space: More than 80,000 square feet in a building consisting of a multi-user area and 24 units of approximately 2,700 square feet each. Tenants can get access to one or more units on flexible terms. Features six to seven air-conditioned laboratories, conforming to bio-safety Class 2 activities and easily upgradable to bio-safety Class 3 activities.

    Number of companies: 10 companies listed online

    Resources: Access to multi-user area with meeting rooms, kitchen, canteen, and reception

    Opened: 2006


    Address: Agoralaan building Abis, B-3590 Diepenbeek

    Phone number: 0032 11 28 69 00

    Website: www.bioville.be

    Contact person: Nico Vandervelpen, managing director

    Space: An initiative of the venture capital group LRM, with support from the Belgian province of Limburg and Hasselt University; more than 1,600 square meters (17,222 square feet) of flexible and high-quality infrastructure ranging from shared one-person desks or bench space to 350 square-meter (3,767-square-foot) tailor made private lab and office modules. Later this year, BioVille will open an additional 2,000 square meters (21,528 square feet) of incubation space, including 12 technology units, meeting facilities, and social areas. Office infrastructure ranges from a shared one-person desk in a fully equipped flex-office, individual office modules of more than 20 square meters (215 square feet), to office floors of 500 square meters (5,382 square feet). Organizations that have outgrown the incubation phase and requiring specific infrastructure such as production facilities can be accommodated with tailor-made facilities

    Number of companies: 21 companies listed online

    Resources: Access to core facilities, central service facility, fully equipped meeting accommodating up to 10 people, and a seminar room holding up to 70 people; access to professional advice and networking. Companies outgrowing the space have access to support in finding an appropriate location and specialized infrastructure that can be used for R&D, commercial activities or production.

    Opened: 2012; expansion planned 2014

  • Czech Republic


    Address: Kamenice 34, 625 00 Brno-Bohunice (part of South Moravian Innovation Centre [JIC] Innovation Park, next to Masaryk University campus)

    Phone number: +420 511 205 320

    Website: www.jic.cz/inbit-en

    Contact person: Zdenek Rucka, life sciences specialist

    Space: 2,000 square meters (21,528 square feet) of laboratories and offices

    Number of companies: Three biopharma companies and two software companies serving biopharma clients listed online. Companies selected through competitive process. Companies must have “innovative” products or services, generate revenue of less than CZK 10 million (about $500,000), have at least one paying customer, “are ambitious and aim to be market leaders in their fields, at least at a national level,” and must not be older than three years.

    Resources: Unlimited access to two separate laboratories. Access to financial support for business plans, R&D, expansion into new markets, improved services, or running costs. Small loans of up to CZK 400,000 (about $20,000) via patent and licensing funds. Grants or “innovation vouchers” of up to CZK 150,000 (about $7,600) toward the purchase of services from one the Brno Universities. Access to consultation via internal team or a range of external mentors, contacts at strategic companies and organizations both at home and abroad, as well as 10 hours of meeting room hire per month free of charge.

    Opened: 2008

  • France

    Lille-Eurasante Bio Incubator

    Address: 310 avenue Eugène Avinée, Eurasante Bio-business Park, 59120 Loos

    Phone number: +33 (0)3 28 55 90 60

    Website: lille.eurasante.com

    Contact person: Etienne Vervaecke, general manager of Eurasanté

    Space: Economic development agency focused exclusively around life sciences and health; 2,000 square meters of laboratories, offices, and shared facilities

    Number of companies: 59 companies created, 97 projects supported

    Resources: Access to up to €100,000 (about $138,000) in pre-seed financing, designed to fund studies to reinforce project feasibility from scientific, technical, legal, and financial standpoints. Access to up to €1 million (almost $1.4 million) in seed financing.

    Opened: 2000 following certification in 1999

  • Germany

    Bio City Leipzig

    Address: Technologietransfergesellschaft mbH, Deutscher Platz 5a, D - 04103 Leipzig

    Phone number: +49 (0) 341 2 12 07-0

    Website: bio-city-leipzig.de/welcome?set_language=en

    Contact person: Gerald Böhm, Ph.D., managing director

    Space: 215,000 square feet of individual laboratory and office facilities

    Number of companies: 24 companies and service providers listed online

    Resources: Access to financial support. On-site presence of Center for Biotechnology and Biomedicine (BBZ) of Leipzig University, where scientists from six faculties carry out basic and applied research, focusing on therapy and diagnostics in the fields of biomedicine, tissue engineering, and molecule design.

    Opened: 2003

    BioInnovationsZentrumDresden (BioInnovationCenter Dresden)

    Address: Tatzberg 47, D-01307 Dresden

    Phone number: +49 351 796 3030

    Website: www.tzdresden.de/bioz-location.html

    Contact person: Gundi Hoelzer-Czech, location manager

    Space: Joint venture of the TechnologieZentrumDresden GmbH (TZD) and the Technische Universität Dresden. About 10,000 square meters (107,639 square feet) of lab space for startups specializing in molecular bio-engineering.

    Number of companies: Tenants are among the 100 companies within the TechnologieZentrumDresden, of which the center is one location; 11 companies listed as BioCenter residents by European Business Network

    Resources: Presence of Biotechnology Centre (Biotec) and the Medical Theoretical Centre, institutes of the Dresden University of Technology

    Opened: 1993

    Biotechnologie Park Luckenwalde

    Address: Im Biotechnologiepark, TGZ I, 14943 Luckenwalde

    Phone number: +49 3371 681-100

    Website: www.bio-luck.de

    Contact person: Christoph Weber, department manager

    Space: Owned by the Structural and Economic Development Corp. of the District of Teltow-Flaeming (SWFG mbH). 9,000 square meters (96,875 square feet) for technology and business companies, including 4,000 square meters (43,056 square feet) of labs and 2,900 square meters (31,215 square feet) of offices within 28-acre campus. lab space suitable for S2 genetic work.

    Number of companies: 25 companies and institutions listed online

    Resources: Access to common facilities, central utilities, conference and seminar rooms, office services, clean rooms, as well as a range of consultation and services, and a cooperative network with universities, technical colleges, and hospitals in the Greater Berlin/Brandenburg area

    Opened: 2011

  • Italy

    Bio Industry Park Silvano Fumero

    Address: Via Ribes 5, Colleretto Giacosa, Torino Italia 10010; branch office in Naples on Via Mezzocannone, 16 inside the Federico II University labs

    Phone number: +39 0125 561311

    Website: www.bioindustrypark.eu

    Space: 17,000 square meters (about 183,000 square feet) of laboratories, offices and pilot production plants. A separate 1,100 square-meter (11,840-square-foot) block housing the University of Turin's Advanced Methodologies Integrated Laboratory. A 1,000-square-meter (10,764-square-foot) bioincubator building for small startups, and 3,000 square meters (32,292 square feet) dedicated to the service center with a congress hall, meeting rooms, offices, guest accommodation, and a cafeteria.

    Number of companies: 42 companies, five research institutions, and six associations listed online

    Resources: Access to services of Able Biosciences, which provides GLP scientific services to tenants designed to support the research and development of drugs, biologics, and biosimilars, from preclinical to clinical stages advanced, including life cycle management. Access to conference area consisting of two main rooms (one seating 150 people, the other 70), four smaller meeting rooms suitable for training courses, workshops, and board meetings, and two multi-purpose areas for displays, exhibitions, refreshments, concerts, and social gatherings.

    Opened: 1998 as Bioindustry Park Canavese (BiPCa); renamed 2009 in honor of its founder Silvano Fumero, manager and scientist who died prematurely in 2008

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