Elephants rarely get cancer: less than 5% of captive elephants die of cancer, compared to 20% of humans. Elephant genomes have at least 20 copies of the tumour suppressor, p53, which may explain their low cancer rates relative to humans, who have only one copy.
Studying Natural Sciences at the University of Cambridge and being part of Murray Edwards was transformational. I’ve worked in publishing, seed capital, technology transfer, and now consult with companies, entrepreneurs and universities on growing biotech businesses and getting them ready for funding.
I founded BioBeat in 2012 to bring energy and growth to the bio sector and open a new chapter. As the world found its way out of the recession, and the biobusiness sector underwent massive transformation, I believed fresh strategies would help us to bring better health to people in a sustainable way. One way to bring this about is for us all to engage with the inspirations of successful women entrepreneurs and leaders. Looking on the podium or in the media, we often see half the world. I thought we needed to change that.
My experience of working with women bio entrepreneurs, and research too, suggests that they adopt different strategies for success – from building companies, working in teams and communication to raising funds and attitudes to risk. Understanding these success factors offers opportunities to develop business models that more effectively engage talent in broader, more inclusive and more dynamic ways. The idea is to show fresh pathways to success and the people who are making an impact.
Porosity and elasticity is at BioBeat’s heart to be a platform for biotech innovation. The feedback from people coming to events is that they make useful connections to grow their business.
The Entrepreneurship Centre at the University of Cambridge's Judge Business School and the Innovation Forum are wonderful partners. BioBeat’s base is Cambridge, however its reach is UK wide with some international connections.
In 2014, I launched the 50 Movers and Shakers in BioBusiness report. This annual report identifies 50 inspirational women in biobusiness in the UK who are challenging the status quo to bring better health to people around the world. The report includes women in companies, research, hospitals, finance and advisory roles.
The 2015 report, which provides insights into the career paths of progressive scientists, reveals that 23 of the 50 women profiled are founders or co-founders of their own companies. The majority of the remainder run their own research labs or are in service functions such as finance or public affairs.
We are looking for 25 Rising Stars to include in the 2016 report. Rising Stars are women under 40 with at least one tangible biobusiness success who are challenging the status quo to bring better health to people around the world. They are the young leaders, the ones to watch, who are inspiring the next generation and making a global impact. Please contact me if you would like to make a nomination.
I am working with MedImmune, the biologics arm of AstraZeneca, on the BioBeat16 event in Cambridge in November. If you would like to come along please get in touch.
Related topic: Jelena Aleksic - Out of the Lab: from Science to Business