ZCube announces the second edition of Open Accelerator: an international call for ideas for life sciences startups


Milan, 16th June, 2017 – ZCube, Research Venture of the pharmaceutical group Zambon, launches the second edition of Open Accelerator, a fast track acceleration program for life science start-up projects.

Open Accelerator is a 12-steps program providing training to international researchers, scientists and aspiring entrepreneurs that, following a selection process, could receive seed investment of up to €100.000 per project. Entries can be made following this link: http://www.openaccelerator.it/.

The call for ideas will be open until 16th July 2017 and covers four main areas:

  • Drug delivery systems (systems that allow better drug delivery either through particles or devices);
  • Open source prototyping: medical devices, biomarkers, diagnostics (instruments and devices that allow safe and effective treatment, rehabilitation, prevention and diagnosis of diseases);
  • Wearables and digital health (technological solutions through wearable devices that improve patient outcomes; technological platforms or mobile applications that offer new solutions to improve patient health);
  • Big data (projects related to data analysis and solutions to improve medical treatment, develop personalized medicine, identify new markers for early diagnosis and reduce healthcare costs).

“For many years ZCube has been committed to developing partnerships in the field of scientific research through an open approach which aims at establishing relationships with international researchers, centers of excellence and universities around the world” declares Elena Zambon, President of Zambon Spa. “Open Accelerator is an evolution of ZCube created to sustain scientific and digital innovation, the latter being a great agent of change of our times especially in the healthcare sector”.

A maximum of 30 projects will be selected to take part in the acceleration program that offers training and mentoring by specialized advisors including entrepreneurs, business angels, venture capitalists and experts from other disciplinary areas.

The acceleration path is open to researchers and scientists that have the ambition to conduct translational science. The program will be based on the established methodology of the Business Model Canvas that has been adopted by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institute of Health (NIH) in the United States.

Moreover, ZCube has recently signed a partnership with IAB – Italian Angels for Biotech, the first association of business angels exclusively dedicated to Life Sciences – and Innogest, a leading venture capital fund operating in Italy and in Europe. Advisors from IAB and Innogest, along with other international experts, will take part in the acceleration path providing mentoring and advice to guide start uppers through business model creation and go-to-market strategy development. At the end of the program the most innovative ideas could receive a seed investment of up to € 100.000, which will serve as an important catalyst to enter the market.

“Open Accelerator is an arena in which researchers and entrepreneurs are helped to build the foundation of their startups and to prepare for the challenge of reaching out to venture capital that will finance the next stages of their projects” concludes Elena Zambon. “Our accelerator program will become the heart of Open Zone, the scientific campus located near Milan where science oxygenates business. Open Zone is a community of 600 people where new projects, talent and proven expertise come together to help affirm Italy’s role as an ideal country for business innovation.”


About ZCube Research Venture Zambon Group
For over a decade ZCube has been active in the exploration of innovative technologies with a strong focus on technology scouting & brokerage at international level. With an experienced team and network of entrepreneurs, business angels and venture capital, ZCube invests in- and supports innovative ideas from early stages of development up to market launch in the fields of drug delivery, medical devices and digital health. ZCube uses a satellite “open source” research model developed by Zambon in order to develop specialized and innovative products in the areas of the company’s therapeutic interest through collaborations with biotech companies, international research centers and universities. For more details on ZCube please see: www.z-cube.it

About Open Zone
Open Zone is a scientific campus near Milan with over 7500mq of laboratories and offices 15.550mq, hosting 22 companies operating in the field of biotechnology and Life Sciences. Open Zone is a place where knowledge is shared amongst multiple partners in the life science to foster innovation, synergy and shared development as well as a place aimed at fostering the development of relationships with the community at large. Open Zone is also home to the Museum Zambon and Oxy.gen, a futuristic air-bubble shaped building created from an idea of the Zambon Group and designed by the architect Michele De Lucchi as a place of science associated with breathing.

About Zambon
Zambon is a leading Italian pharmaceutical and fine-chemical multinational company that has earned a strong reputation over the years for high quality products and services. Zambon is well-established in 3 therapeutic areas: respiratory, pain and women’s health, and is very strongly committed to its entry into the CNS space with Xadago® (safinamide) for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease and rare diseases with Promixin® in cystic fibrosis. Zambon is headquartered in Milan and was established in 1906 in Vicenza. Zambon is present in 19 countries with subsidiaries and almost 2,800 employees with manufacturing units in Italy, Switzerland, France, China and Brazil. Zambon products are commercialized in 84 countries. For details on Zambon please see: www.zambongroup.com

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