Incubator finds $30M in atypical biotech territory

Bioscience entrepreneurship is alive in the Alamo City. After planting a flag in the unlikely locale of San Antonio, Silicon Valley-based incubator outfit InCube Labs has found $30 million from local private and public sources to hatch new life sciences startups.

San Antonio falls way below San Francisco and other prime-time hubs in the pecking order of top bioscience centers. Yet the Texas city is among dozens across the U.S. with ambitions to become biotech players, with officials willing to lure companies with incentives. It also boasts a relatively cheap cost of living compared to biotech hot spots on the East and West coasts like Boston and San Francisco. And with some help from InCube founder Mir Imran, the city has budding prospects as a destination for new device and bioscience startups, the San Antonio Business Journal reported.

The business journal tallied the local funding dollars that have flowed Imran's way as he sets out to get companies started and capitalized in the Alamo City. With more ventures in the works, the incubator has brought life sciences startups such as Corhythm, Fe3 Medical and Neurolink to San Antonio. InCube has followed the dollars, which include $8 million in commitments from the city of San Antonio and Bexar County, according to the business journal.

The University of Texas at San Antonio has also welcomed InCube as a partner in establishing the kind of symbiotic relationship between industry and academia that has been a hallmark in the Bay Area, Boston and the Research Triangle. "On several fronts this helps push forward our efforts to become a Tier 1 university," UTSA entrepreneurship executive Cory Hallam told the newspaper. "It gives us a great research relationship with a company that has been very successful in developing and commercializing many technologies. That's a phenomenal two-way street."

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Special Report: Intrapace - Top 10 medical device VC deals, H1 2011