BioFIT – Day Two – Renovos pitches in Start-up Slam
After an exciting and successful first day at BioFIT 2017, the Future Worlds team arrived early on Wednesday morning at the Palais de la Musique et des Congrès convention centre, ready for another energetic day at Europe’s leading life sciences partnering event in Strasbourg.
After filming some footage for the blog of the buzzing convention centre, Brigitte and I interviewed our resident stand spinout Dr Agnieszka Janeczek of Renovos in our second live Facebook video of the event. Following her successful application, Agnieszka was selected to deliver a seven-minute presentation at the BioFIT Start-up Slams, which the organisers dedicate to entrepreneurs who are about to create or have created an innovative company.
At the beginning of the day she spoke to me about her excitement and anticipation to pitch Renovos at the Start-up Slams later that day. “We’re trying to raise money for further nanoclay development, so I’m looking forward to answering any questions from the panel and receiving some advice on how we can improve our development strategy,” Agnieszka explained.
The Future Worlds stand attracted a large number of visitors throughout the day with many complimenting the team on both the quality of our display and the exciting and unique innovations spinning out from the University of Southampton.
Tyler Ward, Design Engineer of SharkStream, was absolutely fantastic at drawing people to the stand with the motion capture system, even keeping the system on during the lunch networking break to spark conversations that enabled us to connect people to startups that they would not have otherwise have found.
Tyler explained, “We were able to draw them in with the SharkStream demo and then, through more in-depth discussion, could then determine the best Future Worlds startup for their business needs.”
While Tyler secured the stand, I was able to head over to the innovation area to grab some footage of Agnieszka’s captivating presentation in the Start-up Slams. This was such a great opportunity for her to pitch Renovos to an audience of pharma, biotech companies, Technology Transfer Offices (TTOs) and venture capitalists, with a jury panel of high level representatives from across the sector. Agnieszka was able to receive some positive feedback and advice following her pitch. “The panel said it was a very exciting technology and they asked a lot of very detailed questions so I’m hoping that there will be some interaction following up this event,” she explained.
As a speaker in the Start-up Slams, Agnieszka had been awarded additional space in the innovation zone, giving the University of Southampton even more exhibiting space on the second day of the event and Future Worlds benefited from this hugely as she directed additional traffic from her space to our stand.
Later in the afternoon the exhibition space started to slowly simmer down as the event neared its closure. This gave the team some valuable time to reflect on the event and what we had achieved over the last couple of days.
Professor Howard Clark, of Trimunocor, said that the highlight of his second day at the event was an investor meeting, where he developed some very good leads. “I am very excited to follow these up on my return.” he said.
Tyler’s main gain from BioFIT was the amount of new connections he has been able to make with potential users. “I am also looking forward to exploring new application areas in the medical sector,” he explained.
Agnieszka’s highlight of the second day was the pitching event. “It was really interesting to listen to other early stage companies with ideas in development and how they are looking to move their products into the life technologies market,” she explained.
Future Worlds Medicine lead Brigitte Lavoie said, “BioFIT has been a great success for Future Worlds Medicine and the University of Southampton as we have met a lot of companies both big and small and we’re going to be following up a lot of leads in the next few weeks.”
For me, it was a great chance to meet new people in a variety of healthcare markets and I really enjoyed being a representative for our medical startups and spinouts. I have made some valuable connections over the last two days that I believe can really support the Future Worlds network and am looking forward to following up on these leads and telling the rest of team about them on our return to the UK.
Read Natasha’s blog entry from Day One of the event for more stories from Strasbourg. Check the Blog section next week to read more of the Future Worlds team’s highlights and reflections from BioFIT 2017.