Healthcare & Pharmaceutical Awards 2019

GHP / 2019 Healthcare & Pharmaceutical Awards 87 , Accel-Rx Accel-Rx: Best Health Sciences Accelerator 2019 – Canada & Seed Investment Experts of the Year - Canada Supporting health innovation companies developing pharmaceuticals, medical devices and diagnostics, Accel-Rx is Canada’s premier health sciences accelerator. As seed investment specialists, the company focuses on stewarding early-stage companies with smart capital to a level where they can successfully raise a Series A financing. Discover the reasons behind their award-winning success as part of our Healthcare and Pharmaceutical Awards 2019. In the last decade, venture capital funding has shifted away from early-stage companies to focus on later-stage opportunities in an effort to minimise risk, despite creating a financing gap in the commercialisation continuum. Accel-Rx was formed to bridge this gap and address those specific growth challenges. Through their own unique growth platform, Accel-Rx provides access to capital, industry connections, mentorship and customized guidance—a formula designed to stimulate Canada’s health sciences sector. In the high-risk field of health science investing, the company aims to reduce the risk for young companies, giving them an increased chance of success. By providing funding and expertise, the firm helps early-stage companies navigate the journey from being a privately funded seed stage company to an investor-ready one that can successfully attract public and venture capital. Accel-Rx’s support for entrepreneurs goes beyond funding. In 2018, the company launched their Accel-Rx Mentor Program (AMP), a nation-wide mentor program that matches a team of experienced industry executives with early-stage start-ups. The mentors’ primary objective is to help any promising venture through their critical stages of development on an ongoing basis. There is no time limit to the program, and the composition of the mentor team can change according to the needs of the venture. Mentors and mentees are screened prior to acceptance into the program in order to ensure optimal fit for success. The AMP helps take start-up ventures to the next level with wisdom and guidance from global health science leaders. With deep and diverse expertise in commercialisation and business execution, these CEOs provide regular, objective advice and access to their extensive networks in a trusted and conflict- free environment. Since the firm’s inception in 2014, they have screened over two hundred companies and selected ten for investment. Accel-Rx has invested five million dollars across those ten start-ups, enabling another forty-four and a half million dollars in co-investment. Three of those ten have secured a further forty- five million in follow-on funding, a significant financial boost for those companies. The seed stage syndicate landscape has also been changed. Accel-Rx is only able to invest up to half a million per venture, but those companies need a lot more to truly get off the ground. Through their rigorous diligence and relationships with the investment community, the average deal size has grown to $4-5M from $1-2M at the seed level; generating significant positive impacts throughout the community. Collaboration is key, critical in identifying emerging industry developments, advancing early-stage commercialisation opportunities, and establishing private partnerships that can help build scale and increase impact. Accel- Rx’s network is made up of over one hundred partners including large academic research institutions, translational centres, multinational pharmaceutical companies, small and large biotech companies, investor groups, provincial governments, and much more. Ultimately, Accel-Rx’s success comes down to their willingness to invest in early- stage companies that are commercializing innovative technologies. By enabling them to get off the ground and deliver innovative creations that could one day save lives, this firm’s work continues to be vital for Canada’s healthcare industry. Company: Accel-Rx Contact: Natalie Dakers, President & CEO Website: