New biomedical fund to capitalise on our research and entrepreneurial strengths

A new fund to accelerate the development and commercialisation of Australian biomedical discoveries is now officially launched.

Minister for Health and Aged Care Sussan Ley and Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science Greg Hunt today announced the $500 million Biomedical Translation Fund (BTF) was open for applications from private life sciences fund managers seeking to participate.

Ms Ley said the Government’s $250 million investment in the BTF would be dollar-matched by private sector co-investment.

“This investment will ensure the most promising discoveries from world renowned, innovative Australian health and medical research will gain access to institutional growth capital to be turned into better drugs, better devices and better health outcomes for Australians,” Ms Ley said.

“The fund will also help our research experts tap into corporate investment networks to participate in the growing global market for developing treatments, therapies and cures for diseases worldwide.”

“Without increased access to venture capital and entrepreneurial investment we risk missing an opportunity to commercialise our great ideas and research outcomes to benefit all Australians and our economy,” Mr Hunt said.

“Today’s announcement delivers on a major element of the National Innovation and Science Agenda to put Australia on the path to a more innovative and entrepreneurial economy.

“The BTF will leverage our world leading health and medical research strengths and ensure our best ideas are retained in Australia.

“It will also strengthen Australia’s biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries to remain vibrant and competitive into the future through changing economic times.”

Innovation Australia will administer the BTF via its newly appointed BTF Committee chaired by Mr Peter Wills AC. This committee, experienced in health and medical research and venture capital, has been established to oversee the BTF.

“The selection of private sector fund managers, backed by astute professional investors, will be competitive to ensure that they have the skills and expertise to make investment decisions that will pave the way for long term health and business wins,” Mr Hunt said.

Applications for fund managers are open until 14 September 2016.

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