2020-03-08 16:11Press release

Female CEO at over half of SmiLe companies

A striking 57 percent of companies at SmiLe’s incubator for life science companies have female executives. The businesses at these 13 incubator companies include diagnostics to offer personalized cancer treatment, as well as eHealth with services such as online allergy specialists and counseling.


SmiLe Incubator has supported health-related startup companies with business development since 2007 and is based in Lund. Many companies come from innovations at Lund University, but also from elsewhere – for example, several researchers who continue to pursue their ideas in postgraduate programs at foreign universities return with startup companies and need support in order to commercialize their products. Currently there are 23 startup companies at SmiLe.


The businesses at these 13 incubator companies at SmiLe with female executives are varied and include women’s health, diagnostics to be able to offer personalized cancer treatment, eHealth with services such as online allergy specialists and counseling, as well as stroke diagnostics, prebiotics (products that stimulate growth of beneficial intestinal bacteria), digital platforms for preventive health and advanced medical devices.


“It’s great to see that we have such equal leadership among our entrepreneurs. We get an exciting environment where many different aspects are discussed. Especially in connection with International Women’s Day, it’s great to shine the spotlight on the smart, competent and motivated female business executives who are, of course, role models and show the way within their respective fields for other women. We are incredibly proud and pleased to have the opportunity to work with and help these companies in their business development,” says Ebba Fåhraeus, CEO of SmiLe Incubator.


The following incubator companies at SmiLe have female CEOs or executives:

  • Acrivon – Kristina Masson
  • Friska (Wiqvist Ahlgren Hälsa AB) – Camilla Ahlgren
  • Gedea Biotech – Annette Säfholm
  • GlobePatient – Heloisa Oderich
  • GPX Medical – Hanna Sjöström
  • Leuko3ena - Georgia Papapostolou
  • Manje (Industry Frontiers AB) – Prudence Mafuta Persson
  • Medow - Linn Wrangmark och Frida McCabe
  • Nordic Rebalance - Caroline Lilja-Olsson
  • Preactly – Jeanette Köster
  • Samtala – Sofia Allberg
  • UmanSense – Cissi Belfrage
  • Xinnate – Helene Hartman



  • Currently a total of 13 incubator companies are led by women.
  • Eleven of these companies were also founded by women. 
  • SmiLe currently has a total of 23 incubator companies.
  • Over 50 companies have graduated since the inception of the incubator in 2007.
  • All SmiLe companies have together attracted almost SEK 3 billion (SEK 2,956 million) in venture capital since 2014.
  • The 13 that are listed on various trading venues have a market value of SEK 7.8 billion (December 31, 2019).


For information about SmiLe Incubator, contact: Ebba Fåhraeus, CEO at SmiLe Incubator
+46 (0)734000433, ebba@smileincubator.life ; Or visit our mediaroom

Language: English

About SmiLe

SmiLe is a life science business incubator based in Medicon Village in Lund. SmiLe Incubator helps entrepreneurs to commercialize their ideas. There are currently more than 20 companies in SmiLe, which together with alumni companies, have attracted almost EUR more than 280 million in venture capital to date since 2014. SmiLe offers business coaching, a large network of contacts and a dynamic community, as well as many well-equipped laboratories, which is unique of its kind in Sweden. SmiLe is a non-profit organization and receives basic funding from Region Skåne, Lund Municipality, Lund University and Medicon Village. SmiLe´s sponsors are Sparbanken Skåne, Awa, Høiberg, Prevas, Setterwalls, Zacco, Aqilion. SmiLe’s listed alumni companies have a market capitalization of almost EUR 750 million (Q4 2019). www.smileincubator.life