BII News- Joining Novo Nordisk in industry collaboration

BII joins Novo Nordisk in industry collaboration

BII joins Novo Nordisk in industry collaboration

Within the first month of 2021, BioInnovation Institute has signed its second industry collaboration agreement. Novo Nordisk and BII have decided to collaborate in the entrepreneurial space to ease the path for the many start-ups at BII that work to bring solutions to the market.

“Since 2018, we have established our incubator and strengthened our networks in the life science ecosystem to attract entrepreneurial scientists with promising research. An important next step for us is to form industry collaborations in strategically important areas to understand how to meet the needs of the industry”, says Jens Nielsen, CEO of BioInnovation Institute.

To Novo Nordisk, the partnership marks a new approach to working with early innovation that may not be an obvious fit for the company’s current portfolio but could become highly relevant as the innovations mature.

“Historically, we have been more reliant on internal innovation but we are increasingly collaborating with partners in academia and biotech to bring in new ideas.  The collaboration with BII is a new approach and an exciting opportunity for us to engage in entrepreneurship in a less transactional and more informal way, that will allow us to connect with the next generation of cutting-edge innovators” says Daniel B. Timmermann, Head of GDD Innovation, Global Drug Discovery at Novo Nordisk.

Novo Nordisk will be mentoring relevant start-ups and supporting them with expertise in various areas, including therapeutics and the health tech space, a strategic area for BII.

“Novo Nordisk is one of the largest global pharma companies, and it is important for us to understand the innovative needs in the market. In addition to that, Novo Nordisk is also a large health tech company, and this is an area where we would like to foster start-ups in the year to come,” says Jens Nielsen.

Daniel B. Timmermann also puts emphasis on the possibilities within health tech and points to two areas where Novo Nordisk can bring value to the entrepreneurial ecosystem at BII.

“Health tech is increasingly important to Novo Nordisk. Digital medicine and injection device connectivity is one important area and the another is data science and digitalization of drug research which is becoming crucial in our research. But discovery of novel breakthrough medicines is of course still at the center of the Novo Nordisk business, so innovation of new therapeutic concepts is also of great interest to us,” says Daniel B. Timmermann.

Last week, BII signed its first industry collaboration. Read more.


About the BioInnovation Institute Foundation
The BioInnovation Institute foundation (BII) is an international non-profit foundation supported by the Novo Nordisk Foundation. BII operates an incubator to accelerate world-class life science innovation that drives development of new solutions by early life science start-ups for the benefit of people and society.

BII, located in Copenhagen, Denmark, offers start-ups and early-stage projects within health tech, therapeutics and bio-industrials state-of-the-art labs, vibrant office facilities, business development, start-up business incubation, access to high-level mentoring and international networks, plus unique funding opportunities of up to 1.3 million euro per start-up and 2.4 million euro per project.

Since the inauguration of BII in November 2018, BII has awarded 48 million euros to 85 high-growth start-up companies. Read more on

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Impact Report 2022