Bristol-Myers Squibb and LabCentral, an innovative, shared laboratory space designed as a launch pad for life-sciences and biotech startups, have announced an agreement in which Bristol-Myers Squibb has become a LabCentral platinum sponsor. Bristol-Myers Squibb can nominate up to two innovative life sciences and biotech startup companies per year to take up residence in LabCentral’s Kendall Square facilities. The 2016 nomination process for Bristol-Myers Squibb-sponsored Golden Tickets will launch by the end of the first quarter.
“We are thrilled to welcome Bristol-Myers Squibb to Kendall Square and excited to have it join LabCentral’s growing roster of global-company sponsors,” said LabCentral Co-Founder and President, Johannes Fruehauf, M.D., Ph.D. “Clearly, the LabCentral model—providing functional units of space and creating a supportive environment for nascent companies—is meeting a resounding need in the marketplace. Our residents who are working to move early-stage science from the lab bench toward clinical trials stand to gain valuable insights from regular interactions with Bristol-Myers Squibb mentors who are veterans of the process. But we believe it’s a symbiotic relationship; this partnership will enable Bristol-Myers Squibb to benefit from proximity and better access to our entrepreneurs as well as LabCentral alumni and others working in some of the region’s most exciting life-sciences startups.”
“Bristol-Myers Squibb is excited to partner with LabCentral, which serves as a launch pad for scientific innovation, as it naturally aligns with our focus on accelerating the discovery and development of potentially transformational medicines for patients with serious diseases,” said Carl Decicco, Ph. D., head of Discovery at Bristol-Myers Squibb. “This sponsorship also builds on our growing commitment to the Cambridge community, one of the most vibrant ecosystems of world class science, innovation and entrepreneurship.”
In June 2015, Bristol-Myers Squibb announced it would open a new state-of the-art research site in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The new facility will be located at 100 Binney Street in Kendall Square and is expected to open in early 2018.
Regarding Golden Tickets, Dr. Fruehauf said, “Collaboration is also a fundamental tenet underlying the LabCentral Golden Ticket program. A Golden Ticket represents one underwritten bench space per year for one scientist at LabCentral and a priority spot on the waiting list—invaluable for an early-stage company with limited resources. However, equally important is the close bonds that are formed between fledgling start-up and sponsor; the program provides sponsors with important early access to potentially transformational targets and technology. Anecdotally, I also hear that the enthusiasm of our entrepreneurs and the cross-fertilization of science and ideas that takes place at LabCentral energizes sponsors to bring some of that ‘start-up spirit’ back to their regular workplace.” Dr. Fruehauf added, “We look forward to a fruitful, long-term alliance with Bristol-Myers Squibb.”