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The winners of the first Biomedical Startups Competition MBioS Challenge were announced in Kyiv city

Awards ceremony was opened by Innovation House founder, businessman and patron Igor Yankovsky jointly with Alla Oliinyk, Partner at Borsch Ventures and Coordinator at Innovation Development Council under the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine. They have congratulated the finalists and stressed the importance of holding of such Ukraine’s first competition.

Inventors and innovators were competing in three categories as follows: “Projects at the level of idea”, “Projects at the level of prototype”, and “Projects with viable business model and cash flow”. A total of 97 projects were from all the regions of Ukraine have applied for the Competition, however, only 12 of the best startups got into the finals.

Kyiv was the most active region – substantial portion of projects was from the capital of Ukraine. Competition holders have also made a note of developers from the Western region. Project submitted from Mariupol city, Donetsk oblast, came as a pleasant surprise.

“Today we paved the decent way for medical startups competitions. Projects, introduced by finalists, already have some foreign analogues, but it is important for us to develop these activities in Ukraine, rather than anywhere else: with more affordable technologies and reasonable pricing policy. All ideas and developments are worth attention, further development, and investments from Ukrainian business. Though I shall confess that I am most interested in LATRAX project that helps to make lives of patients suffering from neural disorders easier. There are millions of such people around the globe, project is at high development phase, and has economic benefits. This is sort of social investment for us, therefore, I have awarded the special prize from Innovation House to LATRAX team,” – Igor Yankovsky, businessman and patron, said.

“Technological medical startups competition is being held in Ukraine for the first time. As the competition holders, we see clearly that entrepreneurs, companies-contestants, jury members, and we, competition holders, shall work hard to create competitive innovative medical ecosystem in Ukraine. Nevertheless, the firsts step is already made and it was rather successful. Competition has resonated widely in medical and technological communities of Ukraine. And now, startups will obtain acceleration from Borsch Ventures according to key sections of innovation business development (technology, business model, strategy, finances, intellectual property rights, investment raising), and the trip to world-class R&D center that will be granted to the company that has taken the first place in viable business model category,” - Alla Oliinyk, Partner at Borsch Ventures, said.

Ulyana Suprun, Acting Minister of Health of Ukraine, has participated in awards ceremony too. According to her, Ukraine is moving towards reforms and changes in health care system.

“Such startup competitions are only expanding the possibilities for the new ideas and positive reforms in the country. They are fully supported by the state,” - Ulyana Suprun said.

Medicine, IT, and technology took the leading positions among all the submitted projects, while the number of biological projects was at the bottom of the list. According to Alexandr Olshanskiy, President at Internet Invest Group, there are no pure biological directions. In most cases it turns out that there is symbiosis of biology and medicine or biology and IT, etc. “We shall develop these directions, especially since we have already assured ourselves of enormous potential of our innovators. I would not stop geographically in Ukraine only, I would create international scale startups instead,” - admitted he.

Following a brief discussion, jury members announced the winners in three categories. The winners in “Projects at the level of idea” nomination were as follows:

- Esper Bionics team (represented by Dmytro Gazda) - bionic hand prosthesis project from Kyiv city;

- the team from Cherkasy city: MUSIC-Med project (represented by Yuliia Bondarenko), mobile ultrasonic surgical instrument for civil-military medicine, developed by the team of engineers and doctors.

The winners in “Projects at the level of prototype” nomination” were as follows:

- Helsi.me service (represented by Artem Mykhaylyuk) that helps patients to find a doctor via internet, and arrange a visit to a doctor. Doctor, in turn, obtains the tool to maintain patient health records. It should be noted that data is stored in compliance with all the international and Ukrainian safety standards;

- Adsorptive carbon dressing on the base of activated carbon fibrous materials project from Kyiv city (represented by Larysa Sakhno);

- LATRAX team (represented by Irina Hoi) has developed devices that may be used for treatment of various neurological disorders, like resistant epilepsy, depression, etc. by stimulating the vagus nerve.

The winner in “Projects with viable business model and cash flow” was as follows:

- Odesa-based startup QROK MEDICAL (represented by Heorhii Tkachenko) has introduced its navigation and positioning system for hospitals for the medical workers to monitor patients and mobile equipment within the hospital.

Innovation House and its founder Igor Yankovsky have awarded the special prize to LATRAX team – the trip to Life Sciences Baltics 2018 international conference, the largest biotechnology and medical forum that will be held in Vilnius (Latvia), where the team will have an opportunity to attract foreign investors to their project.

According to the organizers of MBioS Challenge, its primary goal was to develop Ukrainian innovation ecosystem, to support Ukrainian scientists, researchers, inventors and entrepreneurs working in the field of medicine, biology and health care. In addition to the awarded prizes, the competition finalists will be granted the opportunity to introduce their projects on May 12 in London to the British investment community.

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