Stonehaven Incubate, a business incubator that brings disruptive human health technologies to the animal health sector, has received capital backing from global animal health company Elanco Animal Health Inc.
The capital will enable Stonehaven Incubate to advance new and existing opportunities and expand its global team. Elanco’s investment accompanies additional participation from insiders at Stonehaven Incubate, with no investor receiving preferential rights.
Elanco also holds the option to invest further capital when additional funds are raised from other sources. Securing the confidence and backing of a group of global life science and strategic animal health investors validates the incubator concept in animal health and shows that it resonates strongly in this high-growth sector, the announcement said.
Launched last year, Stonehaven Incubate has been working with several human health organizations to identify breakthrough innovations and technologies and build strategies for new stand-alone animal health companies. Stonehaven Incubate has launched one company, ANIZOME, and signed an additional three disclosed agreements with human innovators, as well as several undisclosed opportunities that are in the evaluation stage.
The Elanco investment will accelerate the development, financing, day-to-day operation and ultimately exiting of new start-up businesses. Stonehaven Incubate chief executive officer Dr. Mark Heffernan said: “It’s great to have a major partner like Elanco investing in this unique opportunity to translate human innovation to animal health technologies through our innovative seed incubator concept. We welcome Elanco’s commitment to further invest as additional investors emerge. Elanco’s confidence in our model and position as an industry leader will be invaluable as we make decisions for future investments.”
“At Elanco, we believe we can accelerate solutions to animal health’s greatest challenges by innovating through a variety of pathways,” said Aaron Schacht, executive vice president of R&D, Regulatory and Business Development. “We see Stonehaven Incubate as an important animal health-focused innovation model with an established structure and adept leadership. The animal health industry needs more risk capital at work in more start-ups, and we’re excited to be a catalyst for this endeavor.”
Stonehaven is investing in technology originating from companies such as Agile Sciences, Lysando and, most recently, Nuritas – all with the focus on making disruptive human technologies available for the growing animal health sector. So far, this includes projects involving technology that uniquely disables bacterial protection mechanisms, an antimicrobial platform and using artificial intelligence to identify new nutraceuticals and pharmaceuticals. It was leading technology originating from Baylor College of Medicine in the field of the microbiome that resulted in the formation of ANIZOME in 2018.
Switzerland-based Stonehaven Incubate was formed in February 2018 and is a dedicated animal health group committed to creating new companies de novo from disruptive human technology. Stonehaven Incubate works with innovators and builds strategies for new stand-alone animal health companies. It finds experienced management teams and sources the required capital, leaving no stone unturned in its quest to bring human innovations to animal health.
Elanco is a global animal health company that develops products and knowledge services to prevent and treat disease in food animals and pets in more than 90 countries.