Gunnar Pohl med kollega

Nordic Biomarker was founded in 2007 by the biochemist Dr Göran Aronsson and the clinical biochemist Dr Gunnar Pohl. Their business idea didn’t directly come from their research at the time at Umeå University, rather from a clear customer need that they identified after their research period. Today, Nordic Biomarker has grown to 20 employees, has a turnover of SEK 40 million with good profitability, and has customers all over the world.

For how many years did you work with the incubator team?

“Many years. Even before we started Nordic Biomarker in 2007 I have had contact with the founder of Umeå Biotech Incubator, professor Tor Ny, as well as another consultant connected with the incubator.”

What happened to your idea in the end?

“Well the hypothesis held, and still holds today. Nordic Biomarker has now been in operation for 11 years and runs a successful business. Today we employ 20 people, and have a turnover of over SEK 40 million per year with good profitability. Our customers are all over the world, but our sales are growing fastest in China, as is our entire market. We are optimistic about the future and believe we will continue to grow.”

What did you most appreciate about the incubator environment at UBI?

“That we received some financial support very early on, and access to premises at the Department of Chemistry at Umeå University (this was before UBI had moved to Tvistenvägen). This enabled us to get going with our business quickly and start selling our product within just a year. Back then, the incubator team as such didn’t exist in the way it does now. But I’m sure today’s companies appreciate how UBI currently operates, with its new research-aligned projects, its financial resources and its incredibly well-organised process where the business coaches do a fantastic job.”

What learnings have you taken with you from your journey in the incubator?

“That a little bit of help can make an enormous difference for a start-up company.”

What would you say to others wanting to utilise a research idea?

“Our business idea didn’t directly come from our research at the time at Umeå University, rather from a clear customer need that was identified after our research period. So think about how your research can lead to final products that meet market demands. If you’re wondering about something, want to bounce an idea, get help to develop or seek a patent, or need financial support, contact UBI or Uminova Innovation. They’d be delighted to help.”


UBI Incubation Phase


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