MIOSA Panel Promotes San Antonio


MIOSA promotes the life science investment space at their recent forum event

October 3, 2019 - Life science startups from Austin to San Antonio know they need to up their promotion game when it comes to Venture Capital and Angel Investing. The Medical Industry Organization of San Antonio or MIOSA is doing just that with their recent September 20th seminar panel.

Sponsors JP Morgan Chase and MIOSA hosted San Antonio’s Economic Development Manager, Ben Rickelman; Dr. Carole Spangler Vaughn, CEO of Emtora BioSciences and Richard May, Executive Director of Invest in Texas Initiative (IITI). The panel discussion was organized and moderated by Dr. Gabriele Niederaur, CEO of Bluegrass Vascular Technologies.

Dr. Niederaur wanted to highlight the many opportunities San Antonio life science startups provide for the investment community while also providing startups advice in their pursuit to growing their companies. Each of the panelists brought their unique perspective of both their organizations but of San Antonio’s ecosystem as well.

“It’s incredible the energy, number and variety of life science startups that exist in the San Antonio area. It’s only a matter of time when the VCs will pounce on these remarkable opportunities,” remarked IITI’s May. Invest in Texas Initiative promotes all investment spaces. Recently, though, IITI has honed in on the life science space as it seems to have a vacuum of investment attention yet a plethora of investment opportunities especially in the IH 35 corridor from Austin to San Antonio. IITI looks to help match life science VCs/Angels to startups more aggressively.

Rickelman from the San Antonio EDC was featured to showcase San Antonio’s proactive support regarding life science startups. The San Antonio EDC is one of the most aggressive and supportive city departments in the investment community in the state of Texas. Startups from all spaces would be wise to contact their offices regarding the potential assistance and advice Rickelman and his colleagues provide.

Dr. Spangler Vaughn from Emtora BioSciences was a featured panelist as a successful life science company that has a story to tell. The latest was they were awarded a $3M CPRIT SEED grant to study their drug, eRapa, in patients that have the rare disease Familial Adenomatous Polyposis. CPRIT is a highly respected entity so the funding shows Emtora was able to satisfy their careful diligence which is very attractive to investors.

When asked by one of the forty attendees regarding her advice in generating interest, Spangler Vaughn summed it up, “I would say to cast the net wide, and look for money where ever you can.  Each time you interact with investors, you learn valuable information which will only make you better.“

“The interactive panel gave the attendees a chance to voice their financing needs, and collaboratively, sources of funding can be identified to meet those needs” noted Dr. Niederauer, one of the co-founders of MIOSA. MIOSA was founded in 1999 to link startups with advice, mentors, specialized resources, and funding sources for those needing help with their startups. The volunteer group creates networking opportunities for emerging biomedical companies in the San Antonio area by organizing meetings about industry.