Home' Australasian BioTechnology : Vol 27 No 1 Contents Australasian BioTechnology | Volume 27 | Number 1 25
Based at QUT's Institute of Health and Biomedical
Innovation (IHBI), the JJIPO @ QUT serves as a strong
platform to identify and nurture life science research
collaborations across Queensland. The facility is
integral to the Palaszczuk Government's Advance
Queensland plans to create the all-important critical
mass for the successful development and growth of
Queensland's life sciences industry.
In as little as six months since opening, the
partnering office has opened its doors to more than
500 stakeholders through networking and training
sessions, and other face-to-face meetings. For 2017,
some key international visitors and high-level training
and networking events are already locked in for the
benefit of the whole ecosystem.
Beyond partnering meetings, the collaboration has
also yielded funding and mentorship for entrepreneurs
who plan on researching and developing their
healthcare solutions in Queensland.
One example of the ways in which the Queensland
Government and JJIPO @ QUT are collaborating is the
Advance Queensland, Johnson & Johnson Innovation
QuickFire Challenge, held in 2016.
'The competition drew nearly 100 applicants from
around the world, and the quality was exceptional,'
Palaszczuk says. Three finalists, who are working in the
categories of medical devices, pharmaceuticals and
consumer health care, were awarded $100,000 each.
A condition of the competition was that the winners
spend their award in Queensland on research and
commercialisation services to progress their science
toward a patient solution.
'For the recipients, this is an excellent opportunity to
translate their ideas and research into commercially
viable products. Ultimately, the big winner from this
will be patients, if the innovations get to market.
Winning the QuickFire Challenge has certainly
put them in a strong position to achieve this,' says
Johnson & Johnson Innovation Centres are located
in major innovation hotspots throughout the world,
including London, California, Boston and Shanghai,
with satellites in Australia, New Zealand, Israel
and other locations in Asia, Europe and North
America, including Canada. Collectively, Johnson &
Johnson Innovation has explored more than 6500
opportunities globally since 2013 and established 300
collaborations, including more than 40 in Australia.
Johnson & Johnson Innovation has opened JLABS in
seven locations across North America, with more than
140 companies in residence. Johnson & Johnson's
private equity and venture capital arm, Johnson &
Johnson Innovation -- JJDC, has over 40 years of
experience in venture capital investing, invested over
US$1 billion since its inception, and currently has
investments in 68 new companies.
'The JJIPO @ QUT also provides information sessions,
training and networking events for researchers,
start-ups and companies to further build upon their
commercialisation expertise, and access the breadth
and depth of Johnson & Johnson's capabilities,'
QUT's Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and
Commercialisation), Professor Arun Sharma, agrees
that there was a significant opportunity to translate the
Queensland Government's investment in life sciences
and biomedical research into economic development
that was underpinned by industry attraction and job
creation, and seeding of the start-up ecosystem.
'As a university for the real world, QUT is keen to see
its research as part of the global innovation value
chain, and working with organisations like Johnson &
Johnson Innovation is one of the steps in this journey.
QUT is the host for the partnering office, but the office
is an asset for all institutions in Queensland and the
Asia-Pacific region,' Professor Sharma says.
'These partnerships with industry also contribute to the
education of our students as entrepreneurial agents of
change who see start-ups as a viable career choice.'
Johnson & Johnson Innovation Senior Director of New
Ventures, Australia and New Zealand Kathy Connell says
Queensland was identified as the preferred location
for the office because of its track record in translational
research, the Advance Queensland initiative, and its
collaborative culture within science and innovation.
'Australia ranks in the top five most innovative
countries in the world in biotech innovation, and we
at Johnson & Johnson Innovation see this as a huge
promise in Queensland, and across Australia, to
materialise exciting new treatment for patients. There
is a real appetite now for Australia to leverage the
incredible research infrastructure, scientific expertise,
entrepreneurial talent and government focus on
translating scientific discoveries into real-world patient
solutions. We hope to see a new wave of start-ups
coming through our partnering office,' Connell says.
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