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Call for Applications for the Most Innovative European Biotech SME Awards 2017

EuropaBio, the European Association for Bioindustries, invites small and medium sized biotech companies (SMEs) across Europe to apply for the 8th edition of the Most Innovative European Biotech SME Award – a unique annual initiative recognising biotech innovation and its contribution to society. Depending on their field of activity, SMEs can apply in 3 categories: healthcare, agricultural or industrial biotech. Applications must be submitted online by COB Monday 26 June 2017. Two companies will be shortlisted in each category by a jury or biotech experts, with the winners celebrated during a landmark event for SMEs held in early October. Each winner will also receive a €10,000 cheque and two years free EuropaBio membership (runners-up also receive the latter).

Rationale for awarding biotech SMEs in Europe

According to the European Commission, “small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of Europe’s economy. They represent 90% of all businesses in the EU. In the past five years, they have created around 85% of new jobs and provided two-thirds of the total private sector employment in the EU.” In other words, SME matter and the leaders in innovation should be recognized and rewarded.

Biotech exemplifies the way in which science and scientific breakthroughs can be applied to respond to current problems. From new therapies that can address unmet medical needs and fight epidemics and rare diseases, to industrial processes that use renewable feedstocks instead of crude oil, to drought-resistant crops that allow farmers around the world to feed more people under unpredictable climatic conditions, biotechnology pays economic, social and environmental dividends.

The awards have become one of the main initiatives in the European biotech calendar, with almost 200 SMEs competing over the years. Their success stories can be read online here.

The jury

The experts who are part of the jury are involved in biotech and understand the science, the funding realities and the regulatory and political frameworks in which European biotech SMEs operate. They appreciate the potential of innovation and SMEs for Europe’s future, and they will carefully analyse each application to select the nominees.

Peter Heinrich: Chairman of German national biotech association BIO Deutschland and Managing Director of Sinfonie Life Science Management GmbH, Planegg.

Frank Bulens: member of the Management Committee and Board of Directors of Capricorn Venture Partners. He is active in diagnostics, therapeutics and medical devices as well as digital health-tech for the various Capricorn funds that are investing in these areas.

John Brennan: Secretary General of EuropaBio (as of 19 June 2017) with over 25 years’ experience both on the regulatory and the industrial sides of the healthcare industry.

– Other jury members to be announced before the summer.

Criteria for entry

In order to be considered for the EuropaBio SME awards a company must qualify as an SME under the standard EU SME definition (e.g. primary location of operations within Europe, 250 or less employees, €50 Million or less annual turnover).

Deadline for applications

SMEs interested to enter the competition are invited to apply by 26 June 2017 using the online application form.

About EuropaBio and its SME Platform

EuropaBio is the European Association of BioIndustries. Our members are involved in research, development, testing, manufacturing and commercialisation of biotech products and processes in human and animal healthcare, diagnostics, bioinformatics, chemicals, crop protection, agriculture, food and environmental products and services. EuropaBio also counts a number of National Biotech Associations in its membership who in turn represent more than 1800 biotech SMEs.

EuropaBio’s SME Platform focuses its activities on highlighting challenges and financial constraints that biotech SMEs face, and developing policy recommendations to optimise EU and member state funding instruments for biotech SMEs. The SME Platform brings together CEOs of SMEs, National Biotech Associations, Venture Capitalists and private banks, European financial institutions, representatives from the EC, and other interested stakeholders.