Ask your startup colleagues and friends about what they consider the biggest challenges ahead in their entrepreneurial journal, and you will surely hear one thing: lack of resources & funding.
Getting to the bottom of these concerns, often brings a sense of reality to innovators radiating with enthusiasm and drive. Yet, it is crucial to address these issues and moreover, to ask ourselves what can we do to help startups to achieve their fullest potential in the long run.
This week, the Innovation Office at the University of Basel welcomes yet again five Korean startups, with a demonstrated record of excellence in the fields of oncology and immunology. As the global hub for biomedical research and innovation, we consider it our primary responsibility, to connect them with Basel's thriving startup ecosystem. It is for this, that we want to turn the tables and to ask ourselves, how can we maximize and thrive innovation for the benefit of our local and Korean startups?
The Way Ahead: The Swiss-Korea Bilateral Fund
The Innosuisse "South Korea–Korea Switzerland Call for Joint Innovation Projects" in joint cooperation with the Korea Institute for Advancement of Technology (KIAT) dates back as early as 2013. However, previously, the hurdles to apply have been exceptionally high for Swiss startups. This all changed at the beginning of 2023, when the federal law was finally adjusted to make Swiss startups eligible for federal cash contributions, equally to their Korean counterparts.
The Call in a Nutshell
Who should apply: consortium of 1 commercial entity from Korea & Switzerland + 1 research entity from either country
Why should you apply: up to 70% of eligible project costs covered for commercial entity, and 100% for research institution
Evaluation criteria: clear and well-defined project, realistic milestones; justification of procedures & resources