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Greenville Business Magazine

Innosphere Ventures Awarded $2 Million Grant to Advance Life Sciences Innovation Across Six States, Including SC

Dec 05, 2023 01:13PM ● By David Dykes

Innosphere Ventures, in partnership with bioscience trade associations and universities across a six-state region, has been awarded a Build to Scale Venture Challenge grant from the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIE), part of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA).

The grant will fund the Regional Life Sciences Incubator over the course of three years – accelerating high-quality job growth, creating economic opportunity, and supporting the next generation of industry-leading companies in the life sciences sector, according to Innosphere officials.

University partners across the six states include Colorado State University (CSU) through CSU STRATA, the Medical University of South Carolina through the Zucker Institute for Innovation Commercialization, Texas Tech University through its Office of Research and Innovation, University of Colorado – Anshutz, University of Colorado – Boulder (CU Boulder), University of Nebraska – Lincoln (UNL) through NUtech Ventures, University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNeMed Corporation), University of New Mexico through UNM Rainforest Innovations, and the University of Utah’s Vice President for Research.

SCbio officials said it marked a huge win for MUSC and the Zucker Institute for Innovation Commercialization as they were selected to receive funding to support multiple entrepreneurial teams and startups from MUSC over the three-year period.

Innosphere officials said they are eager to engage with partners in the six participating states that share the commitment to technology ecosystem building. Officials said Innosphere’s Build to Scale Venture Challenge application was selected for funding from among more than 220 proposals that will further technology-based economic development initiatives and support the acceleration of technology entrepreneurship.

Mike Freeman, CEO of Innosphere Ventures, expressed his gratitude for U.S. EDA’s support, saying, “We are immensely thankful for the EDA’s belief in our mission. This grant enables us to drive innovation, strengthen the life sciences ecosystem, and create lasting economic impact not just locally but for the entire United States.”

SCbio and Innosphere officials said the Regional Life Sciences Incubation program will support startups that are developing or commercializing technologies, products, devices, and life-saving breakthroughs, accelerate the journey from laboratory discoveries to market, and catalyze economic growth.

The officials also said the U.S. EDA award signifies a critical investment in the future of life sciences innovation. With approximately 30 science and tech-based companies benefiting from Innosphere programs annually, Innosphere is at the forefront of organizing early-stage capital and providing critical business support to entrepreneurial startup teams within the ecosystem.

“EDA is proud to partner with Innosphere Ventures to support life sciences entrepreneurship,” said Angela Martinez, director of EDA’s Denver Regional Office. “This investment will help further the Regional Life Sciences Incubator by harnessing the strengths of research universities across six states to fuel transformative innovation, grow regional economies, and create high-value jobs.”