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Applications to OneStart triple to nearly 650 life science startups

Daniel Perez, CEO, Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable/OneStart

638 early-stage life science startups representing 50 countries have applied to OneStart 2015 to vie for non-dilutive prizes of £100k/$150k and free lab space.

LONDON – The Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable and SR One are thrilled to announce the largest and most diverse applicant cohort to date for OneStart, the world’s largest life science and health care startup accelerator in the world, which welcomes ideas from across the spectrum: therapeutics, diagnostics, software, medical devices, research tools, and more.

638 early-stage life science startups representing 50 countries across all continents applied to OneStart 2015, which translates to a 3-fold increase from 2014.

OneStart applications triple to nearly 650 startups for 2015 programme.
OneStart applications triple to nearly 650 startups for 2015 programme


OneStart 2015 is made possible by the support and expertise shared by our partners Johnson & Johnson Innovation, Takeda Ventures, Bristol-Myers Squibb, GSK, McKinsey & Company, Roche, MedCity, AstraZeneca, Silicon Valley Bank, Forresters, and Olswang.

The mission of OneStart is to equip budding bio-entrepreneurs with the skills and industry network needed to take their startup idea to an investable position. Startups based in North and South America are invited to apply to the Americas stream of OneStart, whilst those based elsewhere are invited to apply to the parallel Europe stream.

Over 100 top industry experts will mentor 70 semi-finalist startups in Spring 2015 and help to decide which startup in the Americas and Europe streams will take home a non-dilutive, no-strings-attached grand prize of £100k (Europe) or $150k (Americas) with free lab space at the Finals Gala in May 2015.

The most represented countries in this year’s applications were the US (225 startups) and the UK (179), with Canada in third (81).

OneStart Americas 2015 geographical breakdown of applications
OneStart Americas 2015 geographical breakdown of applications

OneStart Europe 2015 geographical breakdown of applications
OneStart Europe 2015 geographical breakdown of applications


Of particular note, California and Massachusetts accounted for only 45% of all US applications for 2015, compared with 72% last year, showing a promising increase in the reach of OneStart into the biotech startup scene across the US.

Increasing diversity of US applications from outside California/MassachusettsIncreasing diversity of US applications from outside California/Massachusetts


London, Cambridge and Oxford continued to dominate UK bioscience, accounting for 75% of all UK applications for 2015, unchanged from last year, but encouragingly, 44% of applications to OneStart Europe came from outside of the UK, drastically increased from merely 9% prior years. Unexpectedly, there were just 3 more applications this year from Oxford compared with last year, whilst numbers from Cambridge almost doubled and London more than tripled.

Golden Triangle (London, Cambridge & Oxford) continues to dominate UK applications
Golden Triangle (London, Cambridge & Oxford) continues to dominate UK applications


OneStart demonstrates the deep appetite of researchers and students to realise the commercial potential of their scientific discoveries and ideas, with over three-quarters of the 1564 co-founders currently studying or working in academia, and provides growing evidence that brilliant ideas are abundant both from established biotech hubs, such as the Bay Area and the UK's Golden Triangle, and beyond.

Daniel Perez, CEO of the Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable, commented:

"Both the number and quality of applications to OneStart has far surpassed the expectations of OBR, SR One, and the rest of our partners. We are overjoyed by the enthusiasm shown by young life science entrepreneurs all around the world, and the support of our partners. It’s going to be incredibly hard for our judging panel to decide on the top 70 teams."

Matthew Foy, Partner of SR One, commented:

"The judges have a lot of work to do over the next two weeks, but we are excited to get reading and learn about all 638 innovative start-up ideas. Additionally, along with the OneStart industry mentors and industry partners, SR One is very much looking forward to working with the chosen 70 semi-finalists to develop their strategies and help them launch their businesses."

Patrick Verheyen, Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation London, commented:

“Our participation in OneStart continues to be an important way for us to support and help advance the exciting life science innovation taking place around the world. We are delighted to see such strong participation in 2015 and look forward to working with many of the teams to take their business plans to the next level."

The 70 semi-finalist teams will be announced before Christmas on the OneStart website: onestart.co


About OneStart

OneStart is the world’s largest life sciences and health care business plan accelerator programme, welcoming ideas from across the spectrum, from therapeutics and diagnostics to software, medical devices and research tools. The OneStart initiative was founded in 2012 by the Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable and SR One.

Each year, 35 semi-finalist teams from each of two parallel streams, Americas and Europe (including the rest of the world), are chosen to attend the Biotech Bootcamps in February 2015 and undertake 6 weeks of intensive mentoring with over 100 top industry experts to hone their business plan and investors’ pitch deck. A selection of our 2015 mentors are listed at: onestart.co/mentors

The top 10 teams from each region are then selected to pitch at the Finals Galas in May 2015 during which the most exceptional team for the Americas and Europe streams is awarded a non-dilutive grand prize of £100k/$150k and free lab space, with no strings attached. Applications to OneStart are completely free-of-charge and all participants retain full control and ownership of their business.

Partners of OneStart 2015 are Johnson & Johnson Innovation, Takeda Ventures, Bristol-Myers Squibb, GSK, McKinsey & Company, Roche, MedCity, AstraZeneca, Silicon Valley Bank, Forresters, and Olswang.

Learn more about OneStart at onestart.co

Learn more about past OneStart finalists at onestart.co/startups

About the Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable

The Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable (OBR) is a global platform for innovators that aims to bridge the gap between industry and academia to move ideas forward in health care and the life sciences.

OBR founded OneStart together with SR One in order to unlock and facilitate latent entrepreneurship in younger scientists. By marrying generous financial support with deep industry experience OBR hopes that OneStart sets many dozens of companies in motion each year, each positively impacting human health. Find out more at oxbridgebiotech.com

About SR One

SR One is the corporate venture capital arm of GSK. The firm invests globally in emerging life science companies that are pursuing innovative science with significant impact on medical care. SR One has invested over $830 million in the biotech space.

SR One teamed up with the Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable (OBR) because of their shared missions of catalysing entrepreneurship. Together with OBR, SR One firmly believes that they can have a positive impact on human health by supporting visionary founders, with OneStart as a vehicle to that end. Find out more at srone.com

Press Contact

Daniel Perez

dan@oxbridgebiotech.com