Moving from academic idea to a viable business is one of the biggest challenges facing universities around the world. Universities are breeding grounds for bright ideas and new innovations yet up to 95% of them fail to ever get to market. Within the Netherlands, this is extremely prevalent, as the home of 12 of the Top 200 universities in the world the lack of startup success continues to be a battle.

However, some strong examples do exist. One person showcasing how to successfully bring science to clinical practice is Rianne Rotink who, with NLC, founded Concord Neonatal. Back in 2017, Rianne was introduced to the inventors of Concord from Leiden University Medical Center, Prof. Arjan te Pas, and Alex Vernooij. LUMC has developed an innovative care concept, that has the potential to reduce complications at birth by allowing doctors to help babies breathe before cutting the “lifeline” umbilical cord.

NLC who did the introduction is a European health tech venture builder based in Amsterdam who connect academics with successful entrepreneurs to help solve the problem of getting new health tech innovations to market. Rianne goes onto explain what happened next:

After validation, we decided that this invention not only offers good business potential but has a real relevant impact on the lives of many babies and their families. Therefore Concord Neonatal was founded by NLC and me in April 2017, as a spinoff from LUMC. I quit my corporate job in June 2017 to join Concord Neonatal as the CEO.

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