The Babraham Research Campus’ third cohort of Accelerate@Babraham life science start-ups - ArkVax, Paediatric HealthTech, ConcR and Stroma Biosciences - went head-to-head on Wednesday afternoon (Nov 25th); competing for £10,000 additional funding generously donated by CMS Ventures in the Accelerate@Babraham with AstraZeneca: Start-up Pitching Competition.
The pitching competition formed part of AstraZeneca’s annual ‘Cambridge Exchange’ event, during which EVP of Biopharmaceutical R&D Sir Mene Pangalos and key figures from the Universities of Cambridge and Oxford discussed the collaborative efforts undertaken to tackle COVID-19 and the science-led approaches to developing testing and treatment for the disease. The event specifically highlighted the role that collaboration, and the Cambridge life science cluster, have played in orchestrating the UK and global response to the pandemic.
Facilitated by Hitesh Sanganee, AstraZeneca’s Head of Emerging Innovations, each Accelerate@Babraham cohort company had just three minutes to pitch their technology, set out critical next steps and communicate their investment aspirations in order to convince the listening audience that their venture was most deserving of the additional cash injection.
Having heard ArkVax, Paediatric HealthTech, ConcR and Stroma Biosciences present, the audience cast their votes and the winner – Paediatric HealthTech - was announced by Shaun Grady, SVP Business Development Operations, AstraZeneca.
Paediatric HealthTech aims to positively change the development, learning and life chances of children with hearing loss. CEO,Tamsin Holland-Brown commented: “This is a pivotal amount of money that will allow the next step of the project – to complete the medical device CE marking and start using the Hear Glue Ear product set in a clinical pathway - to move forward. This feels like a very significant step towards changing the outcome of children with deafness secondary to glue ear. It is fantastic to have been able to continue to move the project forward during Covid, when grommet operations are not available (due to surgery prioritisation categories that had to be introduced) and children have little support.
“It has been inspiring to be working alongside colleagues who are part of the Accelerate@Babraham cohort this year, who are doing so much to advance the science of vaccines and technology available to treat cancer. I look forward to updating CMS ventures on the impact the prize has on the project. Thank you to Accelerate@Babraham for continuing to provide guidance and opportunities for us all and thank you to AstraZeneca for the chance to speak at such an inspiring event.”