Sofinnova launches BiovelocITA: the first biotech accelerator in Italy

Milan, Italy - November 16th, 2015. Sofinnova Partners, a leading European venture capital firm specialized in Life Sciences, today announced the launch of BiovelocITA, the first Italian accelerator dedicated to biotech companies.
BiovelocITA brings together best-in-class scientists, entrepreneurs and investors to foster the development of pioneering companies. BiovelocITA is co-founded and promoted by Sofinnova Partners, a historical player on the Italian biotech market. Active in Italy for more than fifteen years, Sofinnova Partners is in a privileged position to help Italy grow into one of Europe’s strongest biotech market.
BiovelocITA’s mission is to accelerate to proof of concept promising research projects and transform them into biotech companies. The accelerator was co-founded and will be managed by two Italian repeat entrepreneurs with an outstanding track record: Silvano Spinelli, Chairman, and Gabriella Camboni, CEO. Silvano and Gabriella founded EOS which they sold in 2013 to Clovis Oncology for $470 million. Prior to that they founded Novuspharma which went public on the Italian Nuovo Mercato in 2000. Sofinnova Partners invested and backed both companies from the start.
BiovelocITA has already signed its first strategic partnership with TTFactor, the tech-transfer company managing the intellectual property portfolio of three leading Italian Research Institutes, IFOM (the FIRC Institute of Molecular Oncology), IEO (Istituto Europeo di Oncologia, IRCCS), and Centro Cardiologico Monzino, IRCCS. More than ten biotech projects are currently under study from TTFactor and other sources, and this agreement will broaden BiovelocITA’s projects’ sourcing capabilities. In parallel to the academic partnerships, BiovelocITA has initiated a fundraising campaign, and has already secured an initial financial endowment of six million euros, over the next years of operations, provided by Sofinnova Partners and a restricted group of investors introduced by BANOR SIM SpA.
Graziano Seghezzi, Partner at Sofinnova Partners, said: “There is a window of opportunity in Italy: the science is excellent and the pool of entrepreneurs is growing. BiovelocITA has the capacity to seize this moment as it will connect the three indispensable players of a solid entrepreneur-oriented biotech market: best-in-class scientists, managers and investors”.
Silvano Spinelli, Chairman and co-Founder of BiovelocITA, declared: “Gabriella and I are thrilled to once again team up with Sofinnova Partners. Together, we have created and developed EOS and Novuspharma, two successful biotech companies. With BiovelocITA we will replicate the experience of transforming a promising research project into successful a biotech company, but at a larger scale”.

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About BiovelocITA
BiovelocITA S.r.l. is Italy’s first Italian accelerator dedicated to biotech. It was founded by Sofinnova Partners, a leading European venture capital firm specialized in Life Science which over the past 40 years financed and accompanied almost 500 companies. Through BiovelocITA, entrepreneurs, scientists and investors will collaborate to accelerate world-class biotech projects to preclinical proof of concept. Strived to offer innovative solutions to the medical community and its patients, BiovelocITA will help build market breaking biotech companies in all therapeutic areas. For more information, please visit:

About Sofinnova Partners
Sofinnova Partners is a leading European venture capital firm specialized in Life Sciences. Based in Paris, France, the firm brings together 12 highly experienced investment professionals from all over Europe, the US and China. The firm focuses on paradigm shifting technologies alongside visionary entrepreneurs. Sofinnova Partners seeks to invest as a founding and lead investor in start-ups and corporate spin-offs, and for more than 40 years has backed nearly 500 companies creating market leaders around the globe. Today, Sofinnova Partners has over 1.3 billion of funds under management.
BANOR SIM Spa is an Italian “boutique” - a regulated investment firm - specialized in capital management and financial advisory services for high net worth individuals and institutions. With offices in Milan, Turin and, through its sister company BANOR Capital Ltd, in London, Luxembourg and Lugano, BANOR SIM has historically supported leading business families. BANOR SIM has over 3 billion euros in assets under management and advisory.