IAN & BIRAC Partner to launch “Bioangels” to raise INR 350 crore investment for startups


11th May 2022, New Delhi: To unlock the potential of Indian startups, the Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) collaborated with the Indian Angel Network (IAN) to launch an angel investor network, BioAngels. 

BioAngels is the country’s first sector-focused angel investor group to fuel the growth of startups from Biotech – the sunrise sector. Sub-domains include Medtech, Healthtech, Pharma, Cleantech & Agritech.

The biotech sector has potential for cascading multiplier effect to contribute to India’s economic growth target of a $5 trillion USD economy by 2025.

BioAngels is an inclusive platform that engages early-stage investors from India and overseas from different angel investor groups, to fund and nurture high-quality startups, with both money and mentoring backed with critical sectoral expertise.

BioAngels’s vision is to become the platform of choice for Investors and innovative startups to build globally competitive companies. 

BIRAC, the not-for-profit Public Sector Enterprise of Department of Biotechnology, Govt of India, has been instrumental in supporting the technology led startups right from ideation, incubation, and acceleration for commercialization. By partnering with IAN, it fills up a critical gap of Angel money requirement to make Startups VC investment ready by unlocking high quality business mentoring and industry networks for the startups. 

Dr. Alka Sharma, Senior Adviser, DBT & MD, BIRAC said“The revised national biotechnology strategy is the key driver of knowledge innovation driven bioeconomy.

This unique association of BIRAC and Indian Angel Network is a first of its kind biotechnology focused funding network which would bring biotechnology startups closer to the angel investors. For the growth of startup ecosystem, participation of private investment is critical.”

Mr. Saurabh Srivastava, Founder, IAN and Co-founder & Past Chairman, NASSCOM said“We will recognize the significance of this launch a few years down the road as this plugs the gap in the investing ecosystem for biotech startups.

The IT Industry, which was just $52 mill when I cofounded NASSCOM 30 odd years ago has become a $250 billion industry and considered India’s biggest success.

But the area we are talking about is much larger than IT and even more important. While the IT sector is focussed on overseas customers, here the actual impact will be transformational on the lives of Indians.

And investor interest is already palpable: we ourselves at IAN Fund have invested 25% of our corpus in this sector.”

Dr. Manish Diwan, Head, Strategic Partnership & Entrepreneurship Development, BIRAC said, “BIRAC is keen to encourage participation of private investments with high quality mentoring for technology led startups.

This partnership with a professionally run angel group, Indian Angel Network, leverages its reach, frameworks, and governance.

This Public-private partnership has the potential to propel startups growth by making them VC investment ready, thereby attracting global investors and augmenting India as the global innovation hub.”

Ms. Padmaja Ruparel, Founder, BioAngels and Co-Founder, IAN said “This partnership demonstrates another step in BIRAC’s evolution towards its objective of building the biotech/ health tech /agri and cleantech early-stage ecosystem.

It has further promised to provide access to high-quality technology expertise embedded in the Dept. of Biotechnology ecosystem.

This is extremely critical because it is key for investors to understand the technology and its functionality, before taking an investment decision.”

Mr. Srikant Sastri, Governance Board Member, BioAngels said “The quality of founders is very good in the biotech & life sciences sector.

Through BioAngels, we are keen on creating an ecosystem wherein we can connect founders with investors, and with each other if needed. The idea is to disrupt the conventional fundraising template.”

About Indian Angel Network:

Indian Angel Network is India’s first and world’s largest business angel network with close to 500 members across the world, comprising the who’s who of successful entrepreneurs and dynamic CEOs.

With investors from 12 countries, IAN’s presence spans 7 locations, which includes cities in India and the UK.

The network is sector agnostic and has funded start-ups across 19 sectors in India and 7 other countries growing global footprint companies.

With an excellent track record, IAN has been giving excellent cash exits year-on-year to its investor members, for the last 12 years.

Some of its marquee investee companies include Druva, Spinny, Box8, Uniphore, WOW Momos, Consure, Fareye, NOCCARC, Propelld, Skit.ai amongst many others.

IAN Fund, an INR 375 crore VC fund is a uniquely differentiated seed/early stage Fund that aims to transform India’s entrepreneurial landscape.

The fund invests in innovative companies in sectors including healthcare and medical devices, VR, AI, software as a service, marketplaces, fin-tech, big data, artificial intelligence, agritech, and hardware.

With this, IAN has created the single largest platform for seed and early-stage investing, enabling entrepreneurs to raise from INR 0.25 to 50 crores.

About BIRAC:

Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) is a not-for-profit Public Sector Enterprise, set up by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government to strengthen and empower the emerging Biotech enterprises in India to undertake strategic research and innovation, developing globally competent products/ technologies addressing unmet needs.

BIRAC acts at an industry-academia interface and implements its mandate through a wide range of impact initiatives, be it providing access to risk capital through schemes for targeted funding, technology transfer, IP management, and handholding that help bring innovation excellence by the biotech firms to make them globally competitive.

In its 10 years of existence, BIRAC has initiated several schemes, networks, and platforms that help to bridge the existing gaps in the industry-academia Innovation research and facilitate novel, high-quality affordable products development through cutting edge technologies.

BIRAC partners with several national and global stakeholders to nurture and scale the biotech innovation ecosystem in the country.

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