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CSL (ASX:CSL) - CEO, Paul Perreault
CEO, Paul Perreault
Source: CSL
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  • Healthcare giant CSL (CSL) opens the door for biotech start-ups to receive funding, education, equipment, and other support through a $95 million incubator project
  • CSL is joining forces with the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute (WEHI) and the University of Melbourne to kick off the initiative
  • The incubator program will help small biotech companies who have engaged in early research take their discoveries to the next stage of development
  • The Victorian Government will help fund the incubator initiative through an inaugural investment from its $2 billion Breakthrough Victoria Fund
  • The incubator project is slated to open in 2023, with applications to be received from both local and international biotech start-ups

Healthcare giant CSL (CSL) is opening the door for biotech start-ups to receive funding, education, equipment, and other support from a cohort of medical researchers through a $95 million incubator project.

CSL today said it would team up with the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute (WEHI) and the University of Melbourne to kick off the initiative, with a landmark investment from the Victorian Government’s Breakthrough Victoria Fund to underpin the project.

The incubator will be based at CSL’s new global corporate headquarters, currently under construction in the Melbourne Biomedical Precinct.

The incubator’s goals

CSL said the incubator is designed to help small biotech companies who have engaged in early research and are looking to take their discoveries to the next stage of development.

On top of receiving access to the CSL wet-lab facilities, equipment, and office space, biotechs under the incubator program will receive commercialisation education programs, facilitated access to investors, industry mentoring, and access to service providers.

CSL CEO Paul Perreault said the incubator residents would also be able to collaborate, share ideas, and learn together.

“As one of the world’s leading biotechnology companies, CSL is driven by our promise as a patient-focused organisation, so this partnership clearly aligns with our values and purpose,” Mr Perreault said.

“We are well-positioned to support incubator residents, whose experience often lies purely within the lab, better understand commercial aspects of medicines development that may be foreign or new to them.”

WEHI director Doug Hilton said the incubator will look to address some of the challenges typically faced by research scientists when trying to translate their research into commercial products.

“The Melbourne Biomedical Precinct is known for its internationally competitive, high-quality scientific outputs, but lags its global precinct peers when it comes to translating biotech inventions into spin-outs and commercial outcomes,” Professor Hilton said.

“This collaboration will help to build a generation of corporate- and management-skilled scientists who have the knowledge and confidence to run a successful bio-med or biotech company and raise the calibre and quantity of translational outputs from the Melbourne Biomedical Precinct.”

Landmark government funding

The Victorian Government will help fund the incubator initiative, marking the inaugural investment from its $2 billion Breakthrough Victoria Fund.

Breakthrough Victoria CEO Grant Dooley said the project would aim to provide a sustainable asset to progress medical research ideas for decades to come.

The incubator project is slated to open in 2023, with applications to be received from both local and international biotech start-ups.

Shares in CSL were up 0.2 per cent at 3:20 pm AEDT to trade at $316.70.

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