Bioscience business incubator at Brock University

It looks like they have some big plans in Ontario’s Niagara region, excerpted from a joint BioLiink, Goodman School of Business (Brock University) and Innovate Niagara July 4, 2013 media release,

A new biosciences incubator operated by the Goodman School of Business [Brock University] as part of Innovate Niagara’s network of incubators, BioLinc is looking to fill the crucial gap that exists between scientific discovery and business opportunity.

“With a nod to the area we are in, I like to refer to this as the ‘terroir of innovation,’ ” says Dan Lynch, manager of BioLinc, referring to Brock’s location in Niagara’s wine country. “We are a true locavore story. If you think about bioprocessing, it is great to be in a place where we can grow stuff. We have the raw materials close by and accessible.”

Housed in a 4,000-square-foot space located on Brock’s main campus in the new $111.4-million Cairns Family Health and Bioscience Research Complex, BioLinc was launched with a startup investment of $843,500 from FedDev Ontario’s Prosperity Initiative. BioLinc has the capacity to accommodate an ever-changing mix at any time of student entrepreneurs, researchers and companies as residents, with move-ins underway throughout this summer.

The BioLinc facility is also the home of the Goodman School of Business student consulting. In combination with service learning opportunities for Goodman business students, the student consulting service provides business support services for the residents of BioLinc.

The relationship with Innovate Niagara allows BioLinc to leverage the Accelerator Program to help start-ups move to market faster, create jobs and stimulate economic activity.

“We are very excited to utilize this proven framework that helps start-ups to succeed using coaching and mentoring, connections to capital, R&D support, commercialization expertise and more,” says Jeff Chesebrough, Brock University’s Director of Innovation and Incubation who also acts as CEO of Innovate Niagara.

The buzzword at BioLinc is collaboration. Several spaces in the incubator have been designed to accommodate groups of people — be they students or researchers — working together. Furniture is more likely to be a table rather than individual desks. Three lab areas are described as “places for collisions,” where researchers can work together in a neutral space – bringing academia and the private sector together.

The facility also includes a “dry lab” for design and prototyping, computer sciences, web work, a design station and, soon, a 3D printer.

As an incubator, BioLinc offers entrepreneurs office space and equipment, networking to develop the contacts necessary to commercialize their ideas and support and counselling for matters like business plans, finances and business training. Being part of Brock University allows tenants at BioLinc to access facilities and state-of-the-art equipment as well as the most current research and teachings that guide the development of new businesses.

About BioLinc:

Operated by the Goodman School of Business as part of Innovate Niagara’s network of incubators, BioLinc is a bioscience, biotechnology and biomanufacturing facility housed within the Cairns Family Health and Bioscience Complex at Brock University. BioLinc helps transform today’s leading-edge research opportunities into tomorrow’s robust business opportunities by providing students, researchers and private sector companies with a forum to connect, collaborate and commercialize concepts.

About the Goodman School of Business:

Based at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ont., the Goodman School of Business is one of only six schools in Ontario that is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business international. The Goodman School of Business is home to more than 2,600 undergraduate students, 350 graduate students and has 7,000 alumni worldwide.

About Innovate Niagara:

Innovate Niagara helps entrepreneurs in high-growth industries to start, grow and succeed. Innovate Niagara is a Regional Innovation Centre (RIC) funded through the Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs (ONE). Formerly known as nGen – Niagara Interactive Media Generator, Innovate Niagara was renamed in 2013 to reflect their expanded mandate to serve emerging sectors and high-growth industries through business advisory services, tools and resources including a network of business incubators.

Good luck to BioLinc.

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