On March 27, attendees from Hamilton’s thriving life science ecosystem gathered at McMaster Innovation Park for Innovation Factory’s sixth annual Synapse Life Science Competition, Ontario’s premier life science pitch competition.
This years’ top three finalists, Epineuron Technologies, NERv Technologies and Xpan Inc. each delivered their pitch to the judging panel, competing for their share of $60,000 in cash and in-kind prizes, while they, and the 12 other finalists competed for best poster.
The 15 finalists were selected from more than 60 applications and formed teams with post-secondary students, the industry’s future professionals. Together, these teams participated in three months of intensive training, where they produced business and commercialization plans for their ventures and prepared for the showcase.
Hamilton life science company, Epineuron was named the grand prize winner, taking home a prize of $25,000 in cash and 5,000 in-kind for a Consulting package with Shift Health, as well as a 1-year membership with Life Sciences Ontario as and the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce who are developing tomorrow’s gold standard of care for injured peripheral nerves.
“Synapse created a huge amount of value for us. It is really beneficial to get feedback on all the aspects of de-risking the commercializations of a medical device, all this new information is going to make us strong in raising our capital. In the end, the best part for us was building relationships with other entrepreneurs. We really got to learn about their own experiences, which is just as beneficial as some of the information you’d get from the pros.” Said Sergio Aguirre CEO of Epineuron Technologies
NERv took second place receiving $10,000 in cash, $5,000 in-kind for an IP Package with Ridout & Maybee LLP, as well as a 1-year membership with Life Sciences Ontario as and the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce.
Xpan Inc. came in third place, receiving $5,000 in cash, $5,000 in-kind for an IP Package with Aird & McBurney, as well as a 1-year membership with Life Sciences Ontario as and the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce.
TBI Finder, a data analytics company that provides objective concussion assessments won the poster prize of $2,500 cash.
This year’s judges included Dr. Jennifer Hamilton, New Ventures, Johnson & Johnson, J&J Global Community Impact, Dr. Amyn Sayani, R&D Alliances, GSK Canada and Dr. Clive Ward-Able, pharmaceutical executive and consultant.
Since the inaugural Synapse Life Science Pitch Competition, Innovation Factory has worked with more than 65 companies and awarded over $300,000 in cash and in-kind resources though the support of its sponsors.