SmiLe receives SEK 4 million from Vinnova after strengthening the team and the operation
SmiLe Incubator has been awarded the maximum amount, SEK 4 million, from Vinnova’s national excellence program for Swedish business incubators. The funding was awarded to SmiLe after a major overhaul to improve its support and services for life science entrepreneurs.
After spending a few years on the outside looking in, SmiLe has once again been awarded the highest stamp of quality by Vinnova, which has a total budget of SEK 28.4 million to support excellence. SmiLe will receive a total of SEK 4 million from this budget, divided over 2018 and 2019. The incubator supports life science startups in a process that includes several years of business coaching and training programs, as well as matchmaking between entrepreneurs and experts, investors and researchers.
SmiLe Incubator, formerly known as Lund Life Science Incubator, lost its Vinnova funding when the last round of grant applications were submitted for 2016-2017. Now Ebba Fåhraeus, who took over as CEO in 2016, has strengthened the incubator processes and the team so that SmiLe qualifies once again, with plenty of room to spare.
Lund Municipality is one of the major stakeholders of SmiLe Incubator.
“We are extremely pleased that SmiLe Incubator is receiving the maximum amount of funding from Vinnova. The award clearly acknowledges the incubator’s amazing work and Lund’s unique role as a leading innovation center,” says Anders Almgren, chairman of the Municipal Executive Board in Lund.
Current and former SmiLe incubator companies have received a total of SEK 1 billion in venture capital over the past three years. Last spring, ten companies with a total of more than 75 employees left the incubator, and so far this year, seven entrepreneurs have been admitted as new members.
“We received the Vinnova funding as a result of hard work from the entire team. Now we will be able to further strengthen the group and carry out more activities for the companies,” says Ebba Fåhraeus, CEO of SmiLe.
SmiLe Incubator has started an e-health accelerator, Health2b, increased focus on supporting companies in their business processes, and participated in various EU projects that involve internationalizing life science companies.
Unique for SmiLe Incubator, which is one of more than 50 business incubators in Sweden, is that in addition to providing business development and other expertise, SmiLe also offers access to advanced laboratories and a vibrant environment among the life science companies in Medicon Village in Lund, as well as proximity to innovative companies in other industries and universities in an expanding region of Sweden.
Facts about Vinnova’ national excellence program for Swedish incubators:
Vinnova will strengthen support for new knowledge-intensive growth companies by providing financial support to business incubators that meet Vinnova’s quality requirements. Vinnova assesses the ability of the incubator to attract and select companies, the support it provides during the incubation process, its collaborations and its continuous improvement initiatives.
For additional information, please contact:
Ebba Fåhraeus, CEO at SmiLe Incubator
Mobile: +46 734000433
Or visit our mediaroom
SmiLe is a business incubator based in Medicon Village in Lund. SmiLe helps entrepreneurs and startup companies to develop and commercialize new ideas. Our main task is to help the management teams of these companies to navigate the complexities of business development, financing, recruitment and risk management. There are currently around 20 companies in SmiLe, which together have attracted more than SEK 1 000 million in venture capital to date since 2014. Approximately 100 people, representing 20 nationalities, and almost 50 percent of whom are women, work at SmiLe incubator. SmiLe is a community consisting of experts, business advisors, incubator companies as well as alumni companies, which when combined provide a unique opportunity for Life Science Industry startups to benefit from their extensive collective experience. The opportunity also includes an infrastructure that is unique of its kind in Sweden, with well-equipped laboratories and advanced instrumentation. SmiLe has its major financing from Lunds university, Lund Municipality, Region Skåne och Medicon Village.