Pistoia Alliance Launches Startup Challenge

A newly launched business plan contest will ask startup companies from around the world to develop new ideas to lower the barriers to innovation in life sciences R&D. The Pistoia Alliance President’s Startup Challenge 2015 will see small and medium enterprises compete for up to two cash prizes of US$15,000 and a period of expert mentorship from a senior industry figure drawn from the Pistoia Alliance membership.

Why is the Pistoia Alliance running a Startup Challenge?

The startup community is an excellent indicator of future trends. Small businesses and their investors are a bellwether for the needs of industry, as their investment decisions are life-or-death for their companies and they must be sure that they are putting their efforts into the markets, products and services which are most likely to make a decent return.

Can enterprise IT keep up?

In the consumer world there are many examples of how technologies such as Uber, mobile banking, mobile airline check-in and Facebook enable people to seamlessly perform everyday tasks. Each of these activities once required making phone calls, printing documentation or moving data from one device to another – now all is available in a few swipes of a mobile phone. In Silicon Valley it is common for software designers to discuss how they can delight their users, with user centric design is at the core of the new start-ups.

Bigger on the Inside than the Outside

While making my way to a recent Pistoia Alliance networking event I bumped into a colleague from one of our member organisations. She asked me where I was going. On hearing where I was headed, she mentioned that she had heard about this event but she did not think she was entitled to attend, since she was aware that her company was a member of the Pistoia Alliance but she personally was not.