Biotech investment panorama in Chile

Biotech investment panorama in Chile

The “Chilecon Valley” bubble is a weird one. Four years ago, people wrinkled their nose at you when you called yourself an entrepreneur. Today, they treat you like a rockstar and maybe even throw money at your face – especially if you’re a foreign entrepreneur coming to the country. There is an oversupply of tools, help and attention directed at entrepreneurs in Chile just now, which should seem like good news. The bad news? We are getting far too comfortable with all these entities babying us, and once the bubble bursts (if indeed it does) we will be left with nothing – because we have not built any sustainable structure.  Read more

Made in Chile

Made in Chile

Chile has this bad habit of being in the news solely for terrible reasons. Take September 2015: an 8.4 earthquake hits the country and is followed by around a thousand aftershocks. But among the pictures of fallen houses and coastal damages and the half-sad, half-numb resignation that proceeds them there was good news: the apparition of an innocuous and universal cancer drug, made in Chile. This is the promise of Andes Biotechnologies, a Chilean biotech company whose invention has just been cleared by the FDA for clinical trials in the US.  Read more

The birth of a cluster

The birth of a cluster

Hopefully you read my latest post, and how I practically demanded the appearance of local clusters of biotechnology, with research and innovation throughout the world. There’s a first effort in my country that is proving to be a great framework for this: Redbionova.  Read more

Biotech from the end of the world

Biotech from the end of the world

Creating a biotechnology company in Chile is bound to be a bittersweet experience. On one hand, we’ve recently become an entrepreneurial paradise, ranking 20 in Entrepreneur’s “World’s hottest startup scenes,” and thus making us the only country in Latin America to actually be featured in the ranking. Pretty impressive for a country that has one of the lowest investment in research and development and innovation (R+D+I) in the region, if you ask me. On the other hand, this entrepreneurial paradise tends to welcome only fast-working projects, also known as apps, and biotech gets pushed into the background. Biotechnology is not even featured in the country’s strong research and development thematic categories for this year. Knowing this, does creating a biotechnology-based company even make sense in Chile?  Read more