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Family Offices Focus on Sourcing Early Stage Assets in Europe

17 Jan

By Dennis Ford, Founder & CEO, Life Science Nation; Creator of RESI Conference Series

Life Science Nation (LSN) and the Stetson Family Office (SFO) relationship began over 18 months ago when Chuck Stetson decided that the Redefining Early Stage Investments (RESI) Conference Series was the perfect vehicle for his global family office network to achieve two of his goals. The first goal is matching the “dollars and desires” of the early stage family office investor with the vetting capability of LSN’s vast early stage angel network. The second goal was using RESI to surface the companies that needed the capital to make it through early stage development.

Chuck’s vision morphed into an official entity called the Global Family Office BioForum (GFOB), which he launched this year at RESI SF during the JP Morgan event in San Francisco. GFOB is an alliance of international family offices. This organization currently spans 18 cities in the U.S., Europe and Asia, and now has recently expanded to working in cooperation with the Angel Capital Association with 13,000 members in 260 organizations. Click to read the full press release here

LSN and SFO will be bringing a GFOB delegation to the RESI Europe event March 25th in Vienna, Austria. This RESI event will be unique in that it is the first time that RESI has made an appearance in Europe, which means it will be the first time the continent has seen this type of dedicated, investor-focused, partnering event. RESI is known for being the only conference that actually delivers a one-to-one ratio of investors to fundraising CEOs and scientist-entrepreneurs. LSN expects to have 300+ early stage global investors at the RESI Europe event and with the GFOB delegation this will be the first time this many global family office investors has gathered under one roof in Europe.

Including the Stetson Family Office Global Network, RESI will feature ten categories of global investors such as VC, PE, Pharma, foundations, and angel groups. RESI caters to the earliest stage who seek seed, grants and angel capital in the range of 25K to 2mm and the early stage seeking series A and B round funding of 2-10mm. RESI is unique because it is cross silo helping fund early stage drugs, devices, diagnostics and digital health startups.

Recap: Thank you for everyone who made RESI San Francisco our best event yet!

17 Jan

By Claire Jeong, Senior Research Analyst, LSN

claireLast week’s RESI San Francisco during JP Morgan brought almost 1,200 attendees, making it our largest conference to date. This included over 500 investors and 500 early-stage companies in our usual sectors of focus – therapeutics, medical devices, diagnostics, and digital health. Here is the breakdown of technology sectors and investor types that were represented:

The partnering forum hit full capacity earlier than anticipated, so we had to close registration early to provide the best accommodation possible for all attendees. We did our best to provide as many additional meeting areas as possible, but even those spots ended up filling within just a few hours after launch. We truly appreciate the support of everyone who actively participated in the conference and contributing to the early-stage life sciences & healthcare ecosystem. While JPM week always attracts global players, RESI San Francisco 2019 was truly unique in that we were able to welcome large delegations from Taiwan, Israel, and Quebec and support their promising innovations.

We also had two engaging luncheon events during the conference – the Stetson Family Office brought together a network of family offices and other relevant players in fostering their Global Family Office BioForum (GFOB) initiative and promoting an ecosystem that enables “Better Health at Lower Cost”. BioMed Taiwan organized a luncheon and pitching event for their start-up delegation, during which each company did a brief pitch of their technologies. Over 100 attendees RSVP’ed for this popular event.

Responses from the delegations were very positive. Dr. Woei-Jer Chuang, Director General of Department of Life Sciences of Ministry of Science and Technology remarked, “RESI is a fabulous conference that successfully provides the opportunity for early-stage life science companies across biotech and medtech to meet investors from around the globe and create relationships. The RESI conference is what Taiwan needs now to help our start-ups to reach the global stage and build global partnerships.”

The Israel Export Institute & Foreign Trade Administration commented, “RESI’19 was an incredible event, bringing hundreds of investors and tech companies under one roof to engage and create value. We organized a delegation of 11 Israeli Digital Health companies and led them to RESI’19 who have met there tens of potential investors and partners, all saying that the RESI partnering platform is highly beneficial and convenient for use, hoping to see outcomes in the near future. The RESI staff was incredibly helpful and responsive, assisting in any way possible, which helped us maximize our JPM week.” The Israeli delegation included Novotalk, the company taking first place in the Innovation Challenge.

We are extremely grateful for the support of these delegations and their involvement truly speaks for RESI’s niche in the early stage funding landscape. We aim to work with more bioclusters and tapping into their regional ecosystems, helping more companies scale globally.

We also introduced a few new panel topics during the conference, including “Investing in Cell & Gene Therapy” (pictured above) and “Taiwan Investors”. Although many of our panels focus on recurring topics, we will continue to dedicate a set number of panels to new, emerging trends we see in this dynamic ecosystem. Through our team’s work with the LSN Investor Platform and curating information on new and existing investors, we have had longstanding relationships with leading investors and industry leaders, which always enables an excellent lineup of panelists. In addition, we featured the West Coast Innovators’ Pitch Challenge, in which 8 companies in West Coast innovation hubs were selected to pitch in front of a panel of investors who actively assess and evaluate early-stage opportunities. We look forward to continuing the Pitch Challenge to provide the earliest stage companies an opportunity to present to and network with active investors.

2019 will be a big year for RESI, as we plan to expand the conference to regions outside of North America for the very first time. We look forward to seeing you at more of our events this year!

Taiwan Entering Global Life Science Arena

17 Jan

By Jessica Yang, Senior Investor Research Analyst & Asia BD, LSN

Back in October 2018, LSN cooperated with BIOMED Taiwan and the Biomedical Commercialization Center to hold a three-day Biotech/Medtech Startups Fundraising & Entrepreneurship Training Bootcamp in Taiwan. This event was held to help bring Taiwan’s biomedical startups to the international stage and to give the companies a chance to learn how to seek fundraising opportunities. Dennis Ford, LSN Founder and CEO, Greg Mannix, VP of International Business Development, and Jessica Yang, Senior Investor Research Analyst & Asia BD were invited to visit Taiwan to teach the Bootcamp as well as provide one-on-one startup fundraising consultations. This was the first time that Taiwan’s biomedical industry has cooperated in holding a fundraising training program with an international early-stage startup fundraising consulting firm, such as LSN.

On Oct 16, 2018, the first day of the training program, Dennis gave a top-to-bottom master class on outbound global fundraising campaigning to over 90 Taiwanese biomedical startups. Topics included the changing investor landscape, new categories of life science investors, and how to organize and execute a successful roadshow. This class also took companies through positioning, marketing collateral, website creation, branding & messaging, and how to reach out to a target list of global investors. Greg talked about the strategies for searching for global investors and running an investor meeting, including how to source investor leads and how to understand and determine investor fits. In the afternoon, Jessica gave a presentation on how to successfully apply to startup competitions such as RESI Innovation Challenge, including what makes a good Innovation Challenge application. Overall the Bootcamp received a very positive reception on its solid content and unique strategies. Over the next two days, Dennis, Greg, and Jessica sat with 20 teams, giving one-on-one consultations to help teams with their fundraising strategies and marketing collateral.

The three-day training program served the companies as a warm-up to RESI SF. A total of 15 teams signed up for this RESI Conference, and 5 teams were chosen by the LSN scientific review team to participate in the Innovation Challenge. After the fundraising training program in Taiwan, a Taiwanese medtech company, Heroic Faith, won the second prize in Innovation Challenge at last week’s RESI. Its novel approach to support critical care medical practitioners to cope with lung-related complications would greatly enhance medical care efficiency and reduce mortality.

In addition, BioMed Taiwan and the Biomedical Commercialization Center have specially cooperated with LSN to organize the Taiwan Luncheon & Pitching Event at the RESI conference to help bring exposure to biomedical startups from Taiwan. BioMed Taiwan has selected some of the most outstanding startups to take the stage to present their products, effectively promoting them in the international arena.

Other startups among the total of fifteen from Taiwan presented innovations ranging from robotics to tissue regeneration, covering medical devices and pharmaceuticals, attracted impressive remarks from the audience during the occasion. The fifteen included Above Care, Acusense, All Bio, ATP BioPharm, Flat Medical, Free Bionics, Heroic Faith, MTAM Tech, Papivax Biotech, Point Robotics, PressureDOT Technology, Taipei Bio, Taiwan Resonant Waves Research Corp, Ultrondata Driven, and WeMED Biotech. This marked an opportunity for these Taiwanese startups to increase their visibility on the international stage.

BioMed TW also sponsored LSN to arrange a “Taiwan Investors” panel session. Dr. Michel Chu, Chief Innovation Officer of BioMed TW and Jessica had invited several renowned international investment experts to join the forum to discuss the strengths and opportunities associated with Taiwan’s biomedical industry environment. International venture capitalists, multinational enterprises, and startups were invited to Taiwan to pursue a broad range of cooperative opportunities.

Dr. Woei-Jer Chuang, the Director General of Department of Life Sciences of Taiwan Ministry of Science & Technology as well as the Executive Secretary of BioMed TW remarked that the objective of the event was to introduce Taiwan’s achievements and investment environment in biotech and healthcare to international investors and enterprises. He pointed out that Canada, Israel, and Korea have held similar events to promote their countries. Those activities proved to be quite success. LSN was delighted to work with all of those involved in making the Bootcamp and Taiwanese delegation and luncheon at RESI a success, and looks forward to continuing this partnership to bring the amazing technologies developed in Taiwan further into the spotlight!


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