The Innovation Factory
This article was originally published in Start Up
The co-founder of Novoste Corp., Tom Weldon, is launching a proprietary incubator called The Innovation Factory, that operates on a model different from traditional incubators.
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A decade ago, incuabators were seen as the best medicine for what then ailed the medical device industry, most notably a complex regulatory pathway and a difficult venture financing climate. Perhaps not surprisingly, as both the regulatory path and venture financing grew easier in the mid 2000s, incubators began to struggle, victims of their own financing problems. More recently, two huge acquisitions, Abbott's purchase of Evalve and Medtronic's of Ardian, suggest that at least one incubator, The Foundry, is proving that incubation works.
Device giant Medtronic and venture capital leader Sofinnova have teamed up to see if they can help seed the promising ground of device start-ups in Europe, providing an outlet for novel ideas of the continent's physicians.
A decade ago, during the device industry's first financing crisis, medical device incubators played a crucial role in keeping small start-ups viable. But incubators themselves soon ran into problems, most notably in finding a sustainable financing model for themselves. California-based Intersect Partners has been one of the most successful incubators but it, too, needed to find a new model to make incubation viable.