Who will take home the 2019 European Biotech SME Awards?
More than 40 European SMEs, competing across 3 sectors (healthcare, industrial and agricultural biotechnology) have thrown their hat in the ring - meet the six contenders that will present their innovation at the Awards Ceremony on the 6th of November.
This year, our jury panel has reviewed the applications of more than 40 European SMEs, competing across 3 sectors: healthcare, industrial and agricultural biotechnology. We are happy to announce that 6 of them have been shortlisted and invited to present their innovation at the Awards Ceremony hosted by EuropaBio in Brussels, on the 6th of November. The event will include, among others, a European Commission keynote delivered by Carlo Pettinelli, Director of Consumer, Environmental and Health Technologies, DG GROW.
The winners will receive a €10,000 cash prize, as well as European-wide media exposure. In addition, both the winners and runners-up will gain a two-year membership at EuropaBio.
Meet the contenders for this year's edition, six innovative biotech companies, who will pitch on the 6th of November at the Awards Ceremony:
INDUSTRIAL OR WHITE BIOTECH CATEGORY
CARBIOLICE is a joint-venture established in 2016, based on the shared and complementary ambitions of CARBIOS, a green chemical company developing enzymatic technologies; of LIMAGRAIN, a global seed company and of the SPI investment fund operated by Bpifrance. Combining its expertise in compounding, formulation and process development with the enzyme technology developed by CARBIOS, CARBIOLICE has shown that home composting can become a viable end-of-life option for single plastics based on PLA while helping to achieve the goal of zero waste.
The potential of CARBIOLICE is vast and many industrial actors as well as consumers would be able to profit from their innovations in PLA based plastics. In line with the EU’s mission to phase out fossil-based products and use bio-based alternatives, CARBIOLICE provides an innovative, unique and universal green solution to fight plastic pollution.
- Debora Dumont, Managing Partner and Co-founder, Bioqube Ventures
Ingelia is based in Valencia (ESP) and strives to constantly find the most sustainable solution in order to upgrade local resources into high value biobased products. The innovative company developed an innovative process of hydrothermal carbonization of biomass (HTC process). Ingelia can offer solutions for biomass valorization, solving the problem of organic waste management, generating a solid biofuel in harmony with the objectives of the European Commission.
The jury was delighted to recognise Ingelia’s highly innovative HTC process with the potential to help regions worldwide support the transition to a circular bioeconomy. Ingelia’s technology enables a local circular economy where waste becomes instead a valuable resource.
- Joanna Dupont-Inglis, Secretary General, EuropaBio
HEALTHCARE OR RED BIOTECH CATEGORY
Mogrify is aiming to transform the development of life-saving cell therapies. The UK-based SME has developed a proprietary direct cellular conversion technology that makes it possible to transform (transmogrify) adult cell types into other types without needing to enter the stem cell stage. This breakthrough innovation has the potential to not only save the researchers developing cell therapies from investing huge amounts of time and efforts but also to lower costs in the development and manufacturing process of cell therapies.
Mogrify is a truly innovative biotech SME, with a technology that is groundbreaking for cell therapies. Their approach is able to accelerate the development of new cell therapies, and to advance regenerative medicines. The reduction of time and cost of cell therapies is a crucial factor for the biotech industry in and beyond Europe.
- Karen Bernstein, Co-founder and Chairman, BioCentury
Confo Therapeutics is a pioneering biopharmaceutical company building a portfolio of transformative medicines for the treatment of serious diseases using its proprietary Confo® technology, a proprietary GPCR conformation-sensitive drug discovery engine. Confo Therapeutics was spun out of Vrije Universiteit Brussel and VIB in 2015 and operates across two sites in Belgium, in Ghent and Brussels. Headed by an experienced and dynamic leadership team, the Company has raised more than €40 million (both dilutive and non-dilutive funding) from a strong syndicate of international investors.
The jury was convinced by Confo Therapeutics’ authentic approach to increasing screening sensitivity and facilitating the determination of relevant conformation’s 3D structures. Their proprietary CONFO® technology allows the identification of novel chemical starting points and rational design of new medicines.
- Hubert Birner, Managing Partner, TVM Capital
AGRICULTURAL OR GREEN BIOTECH CATEGORY
Biome Makers is a Spanish biotech SME born in Silicon Valley, specialised in the identification and understanding of the microbiome. Thanks to DNA sequencing technologies and proprietary Intelligent computing systems they are able to ease detailed information and recommendations that allow customers to improve their agricultural production and the quality of their products.
By combining DNA ultrasequencing technologies and artificial intelligence, BiomeMakers has enabled precise measurement of soil health using the microbiome as a biomarker. Thanks to this combined approach, farmers are able to measure the effect of their agricultural practices and input for the soil and thus concludes a major breakthrough for innovative and more sustainable agriculture.
- Peter Heinrich, Chair of the EuropaBio SME Platform and Sinfonie Life Sciences Management
BiomassProtein is a Danish SME, providing a patent pending technology for building and operating sustainable, turn-key plant proteins factories. They use technology to extract plant proteins from one of most commonly available and inexpensive green crops: grass. The plant proteins can be used in both animal feed and human food applications, and there is a huge and growing demand over the next +20 years.
With their technology that extracts plant proteins from one of the most available green crops, grass, BiomassProtein tackles a fundamental problem in the search of filling the protein gap in Europe. The jury was thrilled to see more innovative agricultural biotech SMEs applying for this year than ever before. It helps demonstrate that Europe still has the potential to be an inspirational market for green biotechnology.
- Joanna Dupont-Inglis, Secretary General, EuropaBio