EFIB Kick-Off webinar

How to accelerate biotech innovation for a sustainable future

Thursday 27 May | 13:00 – 14:30 CET

Sponsored by:

Get ready for EFIB 2021 by watching the recording of our launch webinar “How to accelerate biotech innovation for a sustainable future”. 

Co-hosted by DSM and Planet B.io (both located at the Biotech Campus Delft) the webinar featured industry, start-up, and financing perspectives on the European biotechnology innovation ecosystem. It provided insights on recent developments in the sector, discussed cooperation in the field and had an outlook on what to expect at EFIB 2021 in Vienna this year. 

During the webinar, our speakers explored:

1)     How bio-based innovation can help enable a sustainable future;

2)     The role of strategic processes and platforms to accelerate ideas from lab to market;

3)     How corporates, start-ups and investors evaluate cooperation needs and challenges.


Event’s Key Takeaways:

Introduction & welcome

Agnes Borg, Industrial Biotechnology Director at EuropaBio, welcomed participants to the webinar, noting that industrial biotechnology is well placed to contribute to the objectives of the EU Green Deal.

Claire Skentelbery, Director-General of EuropaBio, looks forward to welcoming participants to EFIB 2021 in Vienna, Austria with local host LISA Vienna. Austria has a strong industrial biotechnology landscape so is the ideal backdrop for a return to an in-person conference. A key theme of EFIB2021 is how industrial biotechnology delivers across a range of sectors through innovative products & processes, while contributing towards EU Green Deal objectives. In particular, innovation will be showcased through the Start-up Village and Innovation Campus, for which applications are open until 16 June. Registrations for EFIB2021 are also open. (You can book your ticket now here)

Cindy Gerhardt, Managing Director, Planet-B.io at the Biotech Campus Delft

Cindy introduced Planet-B.io as the open innovation ecosystem for industrial biotechnology. She discussed the benefits of collaboration between corporates and start-ups, from providing investment opportunities and increasing entrepreneurship for corporates to access capital, increased structure and credibility for start-ups. She shared Planet-B.io learnings on corporate-startup interactions in the DSM ecosystem, noting that financial, technical, and business support is crucial for start-ups. Joining a triple-helix, multi-tenant campus like the Biotech Campus Delft and becoming part of an innovation ecosystem can be a key step in accessing this support. Cindy also shared her positive experiences with the recent DSM meat replacement innovation challenge and discussed the valuable role that those competitions can provide to all parties. However, she advised that start-ups should thoroughly decide whether or not to take part in those challenges and that it would generally offer the best fit for founders if the requested scope is rather targeted to a specific topic, than only a broad call for innovation.

Amadeus Driando Ahnan-Winarno – Co-Founder & Head of Technology, Better Nature

Amadeus briefly introduced Better Nature, who won the EFIB2020 Start-Up Forum. Better Nature is a UK-based start-up that offers meat alternative food products using tempeh fermentation. With this approach, the company provides a plant-based alternative to other meat-free products which use artificial or ultra-processed ingredients. In the near future, the pipeline will also include the Better Nature burger and dairy ingredients. The focus of his talk was on what startups need in moving from lab to market, summarizing that confidentiality, customizability, scaleability, and product-market fit are among the major points to be addressed by founders, and that every product development stage has different needs. From his experience, up-scaling manufacturing processes is among one of the most challenging steps.  Amadeus also provided insights on the most recent and successful crowdfunding campaign of his company.

Rob van der Meij (Partner, Capricorn Partners)

Rob’s opinion is that industrial biotech is the next stage of investment. In his presentation, he gave an overview of Capricorn Partner’s portfolio of which a majority is related to industrial biotechnology. With regard to the market, Rob perceives industrial biotechnology as a sustainable alternative to existing approaches in chemistry and other industrial sectors. Cost reductions in working with DNA and new platform technologies have contributed to more applications, he said. Rob particularly added that biotech innovation in this field is not going for the lowest prices and also pointed to the fact that cars in their early days were not cheaper than horses. From his perspective, the drivers for industrial biotechnology are much stronger today than ten years ago. He particularly mentioned aspects related to consumer demand and policy and regulation such as the EU Green Deal. In addition, he emphasized that founders should not be shy with regard to defending their developments towards corporates and investors.    

Download the speakers’ presentations or watch the video recording below.


EFIB Kick-off Webinar Slides

Play Video