Lilly backs new $58M life sciences fund for Indiana

Eli Lilly has joined forces with the Indiana State Teachers Retirement Fund, a trio of universities and a non-profit to launch a new, $58 million venture fund for the Hoosier State's life sciences start-ups.

The INext Fund will be the second launched by BioCrossroads, a biotech booster that helped ramp up operations at 14 companies with its original $73 million Indiana Future Fund. The Fund will target start-ups in desperate need of some upfront cash.

"We've made incredible progress building a market where (venture capital) firms, both local and out of state, are investing in our promising life sciences companies," said David Johnson, president and CEO of BioCrossroads. Darren Carroll, vice president of Lilly New Ventures, told the Indianapolis Star that the Fund demonstrated the state's seriousness about building new companies.

- here's the story from the Indianapolis Star

ALSO: The Business Development Bank of Canada and Export Development Canada, meanwhile, have contributed to a new $300 million Tandem fund that Canadian biotechs can apply to for backing.  "The Canadian industry has long relied on private capital sources, and has increasingly been looking abroad for support," said Peter Brenders, CEO of BIOTECanada. "In a world where countries compete aggressively to be first in this new economy, we need dedicated options from the federal government to keep this industry strong, and in Canada." Report