The First Fund™

Funding and Programs

The First Fund™

The First Fund™ provides selected early-stage science startup companies with up to $75,000* to access the Innovation Space’s multi-use wet laboratories, scientific equipment, business building expertise, and core programs. In addition, you’ll receive up to $75,000* in cash to seed operations. The combined award value is a total of up to $150,000* via a convertible note.

Science startup founder received First Fund Investment

About the First Fund

The First Fund mission is to make high-quality investments early in a science entrepreneur’s journey, often as the first believer in a company. The First Fund provides science entrepreneurs a mechanism to immediately start critical lab and business development work, accelerate the achievement of important business milestones, and bring their disruptive technologies to the market faster.

The First Fund is designed to help early-stage science startups with compelling business models address validated problems and opportunities in the following areas:

  • Healthcare
  • Advanced materials
  • Therapeutics
  • Diagnostics
  • Nutrition
  • Chemical ingredients
  • Industrial and agricultural biotechnology
  • Renewable energy

Investment Terms

The First Fund program uses a convertible note with the following terms:

  • Up to $75,000 in monthly fees & services
  • 20% conversion discount at qualified financing event of $500K or more
  • Up to $75,000 in cash, released on move-in
  • $5M valuation cap
  • $150,000 maximum lifetime investment per company
  • Acquisition Premium 150% of note value + accrued interest
  • 36 Month duration
  • Prepayment Option
  • 6% simple interest rate

*The investment amount a startup is eligible for via the First Fund will depend on the requested duration of residency at the Innovation Space matched up to 1:1 with cash value of residency. Maximum cash investment is $75,000 USD. The First Fund REQUIRES residency at the Innovation Space. Cash will not be released until the startup moves into the Innovation Space and begins operations.

Qualifications and Participation

Applications to the First Fund are reviewed on a rolling basis. Founders and teams focused on the growth of their business who will be physically present in the lab space, and make use of our resources, are strongly encouraged to apply.


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