In ten years, the proportion of small and medium-sized companies in the life science area will have doubled in Västerbotten, while a bubbling community will contribute to growth. These are the goals when Umeå Biotech Incubator is entering the next development phase of its incubator business in Umeå.

In the coming years, UBI will develop an incubator process that contributes to the region’s life science companies growing and increasing the number of employees. This will happen within the three-year regional fund project “Life science engine” which runs from 2019 to 2022.

The overall goal of the Life Science engine is to contribute to increased collaboration between academia, county councils and companies in the life science industry in the region. In this way, growth will be created in the region.

The sub-goals are to create a life science community where people meet to share knowledge and resources, to create a process that contributes to an increased knowledge exchange within innovation and commercialization between the academy, county council and the business community with a focus on life science, and also to create an improved incubation process for even more innovative life science companies in the region.

For all sub-goals, the gender distribution among participants and participating companies should be 40/60.

Target groups

The primary target group for the project is the approximately 65 active life science companies in the region, which together have about 800 employees. The secondary target group is employees at Umeå University and Region Västerbotten.

Expected results at when the project ends

Upon completion of the project, the incubation business for business ideas in life science is expected to have improved. Companies that undergo the various incubation processes are verified and maintain a high quality, which is expected to attract capital and skills required to build growing small and medium-sized companies. The growing small and medium-sized companies will create jobs in the region, which will contribute to increasing the region’s attractiveness and growth. The incubator is expected to remain important for Umeå University when recruiting key researchers to the university. The project is expected to contribute to the proportion of women in leading position in the region’s life science companies to be at least 40 percent. The proportion of foreign-born as owners of companies should be at least 25 percent.

Expected long-term effects

Today, there are about 65 life science companies in the region that together create 800 jobs. The largest share of the companies is micro enterprises (82 percent), ten of these companies are small and medium-sized companies (17 percent) and in the category large companies there are only one (1.7 percent) – this large company does not have its headquarter in the region, they only have a manufacturing unit. Compared to national level, the proportion of micro enterprises is 88 percent, small and medium-sized companies 11 percent and large companies 1 percent. The percentage may suggest that our region has a more positive distribution than the national level, but thats because the number of companies in our region is so few. The total number of companies needs to increase and more micro-enterprises should be developed into small and medium-sized companies.

The Europe 2020 strategy will help the member states achieve high employment, good productivity and great social cohesion. Within this strategy, there are five main goals for employment, innovation, education, social cohesion, energy and climate. The Life Science engine is expected to contribute to the strategy by in ten years having doubled the proportion of small and medium-sized companies in the region – and increasing the number of jobs.

In order for the proportion of small and medium-sized companies to increase in life science, it is necessary that there are conditions for research with commercial potential that can be developed into commercial business ideas. The project is also expected to enable more academic research to develop into solutions for society and to contribute to increasing the region’s small and medium-sized companies innovation power and competitiveness in the international market. In the area of Social Cohesion, the project is expected to contribute to an increase in the proportion of women and foreign-born in leading positions in the region’s life science companies.

If you would like more details on the Life science engine, please contact our CEO Jennie Ekbeck.

Email: jennie.ekbeck@ubi.se
Phone: +46(0)90-15 49 77

Articles related to the Life science engine project.

Read more about our former EU-funded development projects – HIBA.