Development of clinician innovations towards Health and Biomedical Sciences Startups
I2Start program is a streamlined funding pathway which brings together three institutions: SMART, NHIC and Enterprise Singapore, in a manner to support company formation around health and biomedical science innovations.
An I2Start application must clearly illustrate the technical feasibility of the technology, a defined go-to-market strategy, and demonstrate the potential for translation to a point where the technology would be attractive for a start-up company formation.
The team must consist of one Clinical Principal Investigator and one Technical Principal Investigator from Singapore’s publicly-funded institutions. The team should have a strong intention to start-up a company.
The Clinical PI must hold a primary appointment in a public healthcare institution or academic medical school in Singapore and be salaried by the institution.
The Technical PI must be employed by public-funded institution in Singapore (e.g. NUS, NTU, SUTD, SIT, SIM, SMU, A*STAR Institutions, Polytechnics, CREATE Institutions, SGH, DUKE-NUS, NUH and etc.). The Technical PI must have relevant scientific/technical background and possess necessary experience to co-direct the project being supported by the grant.
For any queries concerning eligibility, please contact the joint I2Start Grant Secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Funding is considered if the application satisfies the following criteria:
Strong intellectual property position
Demonstrated preliminary proof of-concept data in in-vitro and/or in vivo research/laboratory models (TRL 3* and above)
Detailed technical and clinical development plan leading to a start-up, highlighting project scope, milestones and budget for each phase
Clear and achievable commercial plan outlining the unmet healthcare need, the proposed start-up structure and competitive landscape
* Definition: Technology Readiness Level 3 - Initial proof-of-concept demonstrated
The project should preferably fall under one of the following areas:
All I2Start grant applications will be jointly evaluated by the 3 funding agencies.
Successful applicants will be awarded SMART Innovation Grant^ under Phase 1, alongside a Letter of Intent from NHIC.
Upon meeting the approved Phase 1 milestones, the project will transit into Phase 2, where it will be funded under NHIC I2D grant^. In parallel, ENTERPRISE SINGAPORE will provide a Letter of Intent to support the continuation of the project through the formation of a startup company.
Upon meeting the approved Phase 2 milestones and the required requisites**, the project will transit into Phase 3, whereby the startup company will be supported under Startup SG Tech POC/POV grant^. (To find out more general information about the ENTERPRISE SINGAPORE Startup SG Tech grant, please visit Startup SG Tech).
(1) Incorporate a company (start-up) with key members hired full-time with at least 30% local shareholding, and
(2) License the IPs developed at SMART/ NHIC phase (Licensing agreement)
^ Individual grant terms apply
Funding Quantum and Duration
Phase 1: SMART Innovation Grant funding quantum is capped at S$300,000 (inclusive of 30% indirect costs) awarded to the host institution. The SMART Innovation Grant funding support is up to 1 year.
Phase 2: NHIC I2D funding quantum is capped at S$300,000 (inclusive of max. 30% indirect costs) awarded to the host institution. The NHIC I2D funding support is up to 1 year.
Phase 3: ENTERPRISE SINGAPORE Startup SG Tech (SSG Tech) funding is capped at $250,000 for Proof-of-Concept (POC) projects and $500,000 for Proof-of-Value (POV) projects, awarded to startups incorporated in Singapore with at least 30% local shareholding. The SSG Tech funding support is up to 1 year for POC projects and 2 years for POV projects. To maintain financial discipline, startups would be required to increase its paid-up capital to 10% and 20% of the grant amount for POC and POV respectively.
Terms and Conditions
For the Terms and Conditions governing NHIC grants, please see Terms and Conditions.
Letter of Intent call for 2023 will be open for applications on 3rd April 2023. The closing date is on 02 June 2023.
The Letter of Intent must be submitted by Lead PI to the I2Start Grant Secretariat at email@example.com.
Applicants are required to include the project scope, milestones and budget for all the 3 grant phases through a single submission using the Letter of Intent template.
Shortlisted applicants will be invited to submit a formal grant application through the respective research office.
For detailed information, please refer to the I2START grant information sheet