TORONTO,ON-The Ontario Bioscience Innovation Organization (OBIO®) recently hosted a summit of industry, academic, government and investment leaders about the future of health science innovation in Canada. Attendees engaged in group discussions and heard from subject matter experts to extrapolate a mandate of action for anchoring health science companies in Ontario.
According to OBIO, the outcome of the summit lays a foundation for actionable business cases for private and public sector solutions to the health science industry’s biggest challenges: Innovation Pull, Adoption and Capital Attraction. While Ontario has been recognized for excellence in research and innovation, building and retaining innovative health sciences companies in the province and the country remains a challenge. Despite the growing number of innovative start-up companies, Ontario struggles to attract meaningful investments and the “sticky” capital that is required to grow and sustain leading health sciences companies in the region.
“Today’s gathering of thought leaders focuses on the elements of success and commits to bold solutions for building strong health science companies,” said Gail Garland, CEO, OBIO “We are honored that so many people have come together to ensure that Ontario and Canadians reap the full economic rewards from commercializing technology and the health benefits that accrue to us all.”
In attendance were visionaries who have succeeded in anchoring companies in Ontario and Canada who have established a foundation from both the corporate and investment perspectives, for what success looks like. The half-day agenda included speakers from investment and leading bioscience companies in the Canada and the US. Three separate break-out Action Team sessions were hosted by corporate leaders and venture capital executives in Toronto.
The keynote, speakers and action team leaders brought deep experience and insight to facilitate discussion about solutions. A wide range of industry, investment, government and academics offer both a Canadian and a U.S. perspective on the challenges. Speakers included: David Caluori, principal, General Atlantic; Cameron Piron, CEO, Synaptive Medical, Arun Menawat, CEO, Profound Medical, Scott Phillips, president StarFish Medical and Michael Cloutier, partner Mirador Global and OBIO board chair.
“General Atlantic is dedicated to helping businesses scale and grow to new levels,” said Caluori. “We are proud to be working with Canadian anchor companies like Synaptive Medical, as we recognize the assets and investment opportunities available in Canada. The OBIO Leadership Summit has brought together Health Science leaders from Ontario and Canada who embrace a culture of entrepreneurship, partnership and act as active champions to better the domestic economy and we look forward to evaluating future investment opportunities with Canadian companies.”
“Synaptive Medical is proud to be an Ontario-based medical device and technology company growing our R&D, manufacturing and corporate headquarters here in Canada,” said Piron. “Since our founding in 2012, we’ve expanded from six people to approximately three hundred employees across North America and launched eight commercial products in three countries. With General Atlantic as our equity partner, we’re scaling our international expansion and exporting Canadian know-how to the world. There’s never been a more exciting time for Ontario’s life sciences and medical technology ecosystem.”
“The OBIO Leadership Summit is not a run-of-the-mill roundtable, the vision for the event is not to re-state challenges but rather to rally people to focus on bold solutions to support the development of health science anchor companies,” said Cloutier. “OBIO with its strong track record of successfully bringing people together has once again engaged leadership from a wide range of backgrounds including industry, investment, government and academia who are dedicated to making Canada an innovation investment hub and home to health science companies.”
OBIO says it will publish and launch a report with the recommendations from the OBIO Leadership Summit in early 2017.