Portfolio companies have now raised over $1B in funding to support world-changing innovations
Wilmington, Delaware — The Innovation SpaceTM today announced that its portfolio companies have now raised more than $1 billion in funding since its launch as a not-for-profit organization six years ago. The Innovation Space is one of the largest science-based entrepreneurial ecosystems in the world and has worked with over 100 startups from across the country and internationally to accelerate their trajectory to market and commercialize their world-changing innovations. The Innovation Space supports startups via virtual programs as well as in its 130,000 ft2 of state-of-the-art laboratories and office space equipped with cutting edge scientific equipment.
“This is a defining moment for the Innovation Space and our community of inspiring innovators,” said Bill Provine, Innovation Space founder and CEO. “From entrepreneurs in clean tech working to curb climate change to those in healthcare endeavoring to cure cancer to others developing advanced materials that will improve the way we live in the future; these visionaries are progressing forward innovations that will improve the quality of our lives while simultaneously making our existence on earth more sustainable. At the Innovation Space, we are so proud to play a critical and enabling role in the growth and impact journey of these startups.”
Innovation Space has supported science-based startups across a broad spectrum of industries such as healthcare, innovative ingredients, agriculture, advanced materials, clean tech, and advanced manufacturing. Its portfolio of companies includes healthcare startups like now-public Prelude Therapeutics (NYSE:PRLD), NiKang Therapeutics and Synnovation Therapeutics; agriculture biotechnology company Napigen; renewable hydrogen company and University of Delaware spin-out Versogen; and innovative ingredient companies such as Adesis, which grew rapidly as a business unit of Universal Display (NYSE:OLED) with the enabling assistance of the Innovation Space.
“Innovation is critical to creating jobs, opportunity, and prosperity for our state,” said Delaware Governor John Carney. “In 2017, we partnered with DuPont and the University of Delaware to create the Innovation Space, to offer what many startups cannot afford on their own: state-of-the-art laboratories, premium lab equipment, and quality office space. This partnership has yielded strong results, assisting over 100 startups, including Prelude Therapeutics. The Innovation Space will continue to lead the way for entrepreneurs and changemakers for years to come.”
The foundation of the Innovation Space was built from a strong partnership between DuPont, the University of Delaware and the State of Delaware. Together, this collaboration contributes resources such as financial support, a pipeline of expertise and talent derived from a rich and prolific legacy of innovation that helps startups get off the ground and rapidly grow and scale their impact.
“Reaching this milestone is a remarkable achievement for the Innovation Space,” said Alexa Dembek, Chief Technology and Sustainability Officer at DuPont and Innovation Space Board Member. “Since day one, DuPont has been a proud partner in supporting the Innovation Space’s pursuit of scientific entrepreneurship, and I look forward to many more years of progress from our collaboration. This partnership will help unleash the pioneering spirit of discovery that contributes to our quality of life and fuels a thriving economy.”
“At the University of Delaware, research, innovation and entrepreneurship have always been part of our DNA. We are proud that the partnership we founded with DuPont and the State to launch the Innovation Space has been so successful in transforming discoveries into innovative companies, and ultimately the economic development of our entire state and region,” said Dennis Assanis, President of the University of Delaware and Chair of the Board of Directors of the Innovation Space. “We look forward to continuing our work together to realize the limitless possibilities ahead.”
With a multi-industry mix comprised of 55% healthcare, 30% industrials and 15% clean tech startups, the Innovation Space supports companies innovating solutions to humanity’s challenges in energy, agriculture, the life sciences and engineering.
“This is a great example of cooperation by Delaware’s universities, business partners like DuPont, government at all levels, and philanthropy. I am grateful for the federal funds that helped make this possible, and particularly proud of the $2.5 million in congressionally directed spending I helped secure last year to keep their momentum moving forward”, said U.S. Senator Chris Coons.
Innovation Space has already supported over 700 jobs nationally, including over 450 onsite at the historic Experimental Station campus in Wilmington, Delaware since 2017.
“The Innovation Space continues to inspire science-based startups and support entrepreneurship while showing tremendous success,” said U.S. Senator Tom Carper. Along with Delaware’s Congressional Delegation, Sen. Carper helped secure a grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration to support the early days of the Innovation Space. “This is a great example of what can happen when all levels of government, private organizations and higher education partner to help continue Delaware’s strong legacy of innovation in the sciences.”
“What helps drive innovation in the First State is our entrepreneurial spirit, and the Innovation Space has become a critical partner in fostering that spirit through its critical support of science-based startups,” said Representative Lisa Blunt Rochester. “I’m proud to be a long-time supporter of the Innovation Space’s work, having secured federal funding alongside Senators Carper and Coons for it to expand its footprint in Delaware and across the country. Simply put, the Innovation Space represents the best kind of partnership that we must continue to utilize and leverage to help our state reach its full entrepreneurial, innovative, and economic potential, and I am excited to see what comes next.”
About The Innovation Space™:
The Innovation Space™ is a not-for-profit innovation ecosystem and is a virtual and physical home for leading science entrepreneurs. The Innovation Space™ works to “transform science and technology startups into industry leading companies.” Located on the historic Experimental Station campus in Wilmington, Delaware, the Innovation Space™ is comprised of 130,000 ft2 of state-of-the-art lab and office space with access to cutting edge equipment alongside a suite of entrepreneurship programs and opportunities supporting startup growth. Register for more information and updates to learn more about all the Innovation Space™ programs and funding opportunities.