Singapore-based biotech-focussed incubator NSG BioLabs said today it will be launching a co-working laboratory and office space to support life sciences companies in Singapore.
The lack of suitable spaces for the startups is the major structural challenge holding back their development, according to Daphne Teo, CEO and founder of NSG BioLabs.
Backed by Enterprise Singapore, a government agency responsible for supporting the growth of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and startups, the upcoming ca. 1,400 m² space was designed specifically to help biotech companies in Singapore accelerate their development by providing them access to a co-working office space as well as a full suite of facilities and equipment worth millions of dollars. Standard biology lab facilities, DNA and tissue culture rooms, and equipment like sequencers and flow cytometers are some of the research infrastructure biotech startups can expect to get access to in the space.
NSG BioLabs hopes to help the startups accelerate commercialization and shorten the time for their product to reach the market, which is an impediment to the deep tech sector in Singapore.
The co-working laboratory and office space is yet to be complete and will only launch officially in November 2019, but a few high profile biotech companies have already moved in. They are Engine Biosciences, a drug discovery platform that applies machine learning to genomics, immunoSCAPE, a company that specializes in high-dimensional immune profiling to enable the development of new therapeutics for autoimmune diseases and cancer, and Acumen Research Laboratory that focuses on developing tests for life-threatening infectious diseases.
NSG BioLabs was established early this year by a local team comprising of biotech experts and seasoned investors. It also has a strategic partnership with Nest.Bio, a US-headquartered life science venture capital and incubation firm to help the latter grow its presence in Singapore, US and China. Nest.Bio also operates over 3,700 m² of shared laboratory and office spaces in Cambridge, US and Hangzhou, China.
Sector-specifc shared working space is becoming popular in Singapore. In July, a health tech-focussed accelerator with a co-working space called Catalyst was founded and in September, Singapore’s oldest sugar manufacture Cheng Yew Heng launched Southeast Asia’s first food incubator, Innovate 360. The food incubator is a compound with over 8,000m² featuring shared office space and various manufacturing, research, and logistics facilities.