Stonehaven Incubate, a business incubator that brings disruptive human health technologies to the animal sector, has received capital backing from the global animal health company Elanco Animal Health Incorporated. The capital will enable Stonehaven Incubate to advance new and existing opportunities, and expand its global team. Elanco’s investment accompanies additional participation from insiders at Stonehaven Incubate with no investor receiving preferential rights.
Elanco also holds the option to invest further capital when additional funds are raised from other sources. Securing the confidence and backing of a group of global life science and strategic animal health investors validates the incubator concept in animal health and shows it resonates strongly in this high growth sector.
Launched last year, Stonehaven Incubate has been working with several human health organisations to identify breakthrough innovations and technologies and build strategies for new stand-alone animal health companies. Stonehaven Incubate has launched one company, Anizome, and signed an additional three disclosed agreements with human innovators, as well as several undisclosed opportunities that are in the evaluation stage.
The Elanco investment will accelerate the development, financing, day-to-day operation and ultimately exiting of new start-up businesses.
Stonehaven Incubate CEO, Dr Mark Heffernan, said, “It’s great to have a major partner like Elanco investing in this unique opportunity to translate human innovation to animal health technologies, through our innovative seed incubator concept. We welcome Elanco’s commitment to further invest as additional investors emerge. Elanco’s confidence in our model and position as an industry leader will be invaluable as we make decisions for future investments.”
“At Elanco, we believe we can accelerate solutions to animal health’s greatest challenges by innovating through a variety of pathways,” said Aaron Schacht, executive vice president of R&D, Regulatory and Business Development. “We see Stonehaven Incubate as an important animal health-focused innovation model with an established structure and adept leadership. The animal health industry needs more risk capital at work in more start-ups, and we’re excited to be a catalyst for this endeavor.”
Stonehaven is investing in technology originating from companies such as Agile Sciences, Lysando and most recently, Nuritas – all with the focus on making disruptive human technologies available for the growing animal health sector. So far, this includes projects involving technology that uniquely disables bacterial protection mechanisms, an anti-microbial platform and using artificial intelligence to identify new nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals. It was leading technology originating from Baylor College of Medicine in the field of the microbiome which resulted in the formation of Anizome in 2018.