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State of Illinois Awards $100K Grant to the iBIO Institute's PROPEL Center

Tuesday, July 15, 2014  
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Funds will support multiple PROPEL programs that help life sciences entrepreneurs through early-stage development


CHICAGO (July 15, 2014) – The PROPEL® Center at the iBIO® Institute today announced that Illinois’ Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity (DCEO) has awarded the non-profit a $100,000 grant that will enhance the resources for Illinois-based life sciences startups. The state support for PROPEL, as well as complementary activities like MATTER, is building upon Illinois’ fast-growing hub for life sciences entrepreneurs and investors.


“Through the shared vision of the state, PROPEL, private philanthropy and the private sector, local startups are getting the funding and expertise they need to turn their ideas into successful businesses,” said Linda F. Friedman, senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary of Astellas US, and chairperson of the iBIO Institute.


The DCEO grant will provide direct support to PROPEL companies including PROPEL’s grant program for startups attending AdvaMed 2014 through reduced fees for registration. The true impact of the funds is much greater, however, as it will also provide funding to help startups secure SBIR/STTR funding and achieve value-enhancing goals through PROPEL’s Milestone Award program.


“The growth of new life science start-ups is enhancing Illinois’ reputation as a hub for innovation while also creating new jobs,” said Adam Pollet, director of Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity. “We have the third largest healthcare community in the U.S. and the economic footprint of the life science industry is $98 billion, and we’re poised to grow that even further.  This grant fits clearly into the Illinois Economic Development Plan we published earlier in July.”


PROPEL helps guide the development of formation-stage and early-stage life sciences companies by providing entrepreneurs with access to specialized resources and preparing them for early-stage funding. Its programs include coaching and mentoring, technical assistance, workshops, networking events, mock investor pitch sessions, grant and award programs, business plan competitions and several publications. Since PROPEL was launched by the iBIO Institute in 2007, its active companies have raised more than $110 million.


About the iBIO Institute: The mission of the iBIO Institute is to orchestrate business leadership in delivery of world-class educational programs and job-creating new technology ventures.


About the iBIO Institute’s PROPEL® Center: The mission PROPEL is to increase the number and success rate of early-stage life sciences companies in Illinois.  Other significant donors to PROPEL include the Searle Funds at The Chicago Community Trust, AbbVie Foundation, and Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America.


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For more information contact:
Steve Carlson
Reputation Partners
(312) 217-0606

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