Hamilton’s life science ecosystem gathered virtually on March 24, for Innovation Factory’s eighth annual Synapse Competition, Ontario’s premier life science pitch competition. Synapse is designed to help move innovative life science products and services out of the lab and into the market, by pairing up life science Innovators with business and entrepreneurship students.
Since the inaugural Synapse Life Science Pitch Competition in 2014, Innovation Factory has worked with more than 90 companies and awarded over $500,000 in cash and in-kind resources though the support of its sponsors.
Nine teams made it to the finals this year with two being submissions from the Medical Innovation Fellows for their projects teleMDview and Pathlogix. Together, these teams participated in three months of intensive training, where they produced commercialization plans for their ventures and prepared for the showcase.
The top three finalists, teams ToeFX, Synmedix and Pharmassess Diagnostics were able to compete for the grand prize while the remaining six competed for the “Quick Pitch” prize.
Pathlogix won the “Quick Pitch” prize of $2,500 cash. You can watch their pitch below:
The pitch was developed by Saumik Biswas and Mike Lavdas with contribution from two Synapse students Shilpa Bhardwaj and Yasamin Allahverdi.
The quick pitch or elevator pitch competition was opportunity for companies to showcase a poster accompanied by a pre-recorded 2-minute pitch which addressed the problem, solution and market opportunity. Members of the Synapse Consortium, Innovation Factory, The Forge, Hamilton Health Sciences and several funding agencies had the opportunity to hear about these companies, ask questions and network.
“It was also a bit of an art form to condense the spirit of a 15-page business plan into a 2-minute speech. It required careful consideration of who our audience was, what they care about and how best to deliver our message without enough time for much context,” said Biswas.
Their pitch is for an innovative technology they are developing that harnesses the power of medical imaging and automation to improve inefficiencies in the colon cancer-staging pipeline. Their solution aims to optimize care, reduce costs, better inform treatment decisions and improve patient outcomes.
This marks the fourth win for the fellows as they compete in a string of business competitions to gather funding for their projects. The fellows are working with WORLDiscoveries to file a provisional patent for their technology. They are going to pursue other funding opportunities such as pitch competitions and grants and file for incorporation with a new name and brand in a few months.