BIRAC invites research proposals from start-up biotech companies under BIG scheme

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The Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) under its Biotechnology Ignition Grant (BIG) scheme has invited research proposals from potential entrepreneurs from biotechnology start-ups, or academicians, scientists, researchers, and medical degree holders, biomedical engineering graduates to pursue a promising technology idea and establish and validate proof-of-concept for the idea.

This is the 17th call for proposals from BIRAC since the BIG scheme was launched in 2012 for igniting new ideas in biotechnology. The last date for submission of proposal is September 15, 2020.

The purpose of the BIG Scheme is to foster generation of ideas with commercialisation potential; upscale and validate of proof of concept; encourage researchers to take technology closer to market through a start up; and stimulate enterprise formation.

This scheme is for innovations under healthcare, life sciences, diagnostics, medical devices, drugs, vaccines, drug formulation and delivery systems, etc.

This supports only up to proof-of-concept (POC) stage. Under this special call for BIG scheme, funding will be in the form of grant-in-aid limited up-to Rs. 50 lakh with duration up to 18 months.

The scheme enables technology innovators and entrepreneurs to pursue a promising technology idea, and establish and validate POC for the idea. By funding establishment and validation of POC, BIRAC wishes to help innovators and entrepreneurs advance an idea closer to eventual commercialization/implementation in the form of technology licenses or creation of start-up companies or raising investments for the company. The scheme aims to support high-risk technology ideas with considerable potential for impact.

This strategy is fulfilled through a grant funding scheme called BIG which is available to scientist entrepreneurs from research institutes, academia and start ups. The applicant must be either an incubate or have a registered company with a functional R&D laboratory to be eligible for this grant. The scheme is designed to stimulate commercialization of research discoveries by providing very early stage grants to help bridge the gap between discovery and invention.

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