Ontario Bioscience’s Cluster improves health and economy for all Canadians – builds partnerships between academia, industries and government to provide better care for patients.
The Ontario Bioscience Innovation Organization (OBIO) is the leading advocate for the health industry in Ontario founded in 2009. Their policy is to help companies from the human health industry in Ontario to be further commercialized by engaging with them on strategies, programming, policy and advocacy. The OBIO is focused on building a health innovation economy that will support lead providers of health technology products and services.
There are three main programs that they focus on.
Capital Access Advisory (CAAP) Program
The first one is the Capital Access Advisory (CAAP) Program which brings together companies looking for funding with investors that are interested in offering capital. The program raises funds for health science companies post-seed, those where a market is already in place with customers that are already buying the product. The investor helps deal with velocity risks, which are related to management risk. In other words the investors for a company still need to figure out the velocity of the customer acquisition. The CAAP takes care of the downstream – the in-between of production and sales point.
As of November 2018, they have raised $167 million and there are 58 companies in the organization.
The CAAP companies have access to experts that help them reach their business goals, learn about investor targeting and how to reach a successful raise.
The investors in the CAAP also have their own benefits such as access to companies with high-potential, a high value of deal flow and access to a health science ecosystem intelligence.
The goal of the CAAP is to provide the health science companies with access to the necessary capital and to expand their commercial potential.
Pre-Capital Access Advisory (Pre-CAAP) Program
The second one is Pre-Capital Access Advisory (Pre-CAAP) Program in which the organization boosts the investability in the early stages of a health science company. This is for all private companies from Ontario that focus on products, medical devices or information technologies related to the health science. The program offers strategic business advice, investor readiness, pitch review and access to investor and market research databases.
They offer access to investor materials, prep for conferences, networking events between investors and potential CEOs and workshops, previous and current. The program is accessible to the private health sciences companies all throughout Ontario that intend to apply to OBIO CAAP.
Health to Business Bridge (H2BB) Program
The third asset they offer is access to talent. The Health to Business Bridge (H2BB) Program supports improved access to business-trained talent for the health science sector. They have offered various opportunities for business program students and graduates to work with the health science sector. They offer training and mentorship for short term as well as long term positions to suitable candidates. OBIO has placed 79 interns for various job titles within various companies.
Companies can provide a job opening to which OBIO will pre-screen and recommend candidates for an interview. They offer intensive workshops and training sessions, as well as pair up interns with mentors.
All in all, OBIO is an organization focused on advancing our health science innovation economy, helping health science companies get access to experts and investors. They provide support on strategy, programming, policy and advocacy to help companies in the human health industry in Ontario to further their cause. While often a challenging space to navigate, especially for smaller start-ups, the various programs that the OBIO offers can help you gain access to investors, markets, talent and ultimately work together towards the better health of Ontarians and Canadians, while providing opportunities to the financial sector too.