The Entrepreneur’s Guide to a Biotech Startup

Being a former scientist, I find entrepreneurs’ passion and intelligence inspiring. They are part of the reason why I enjoy working in venture capital so much, and I have the utmost respect for entrepreneurs. It is extremely difficult to raise venture capital, and very few entrepreneurs/scientists are successful at it. Unfortunately, the developing a drug therapy is capital intensive. Some people, such as Johnny Stine, are developing drugs without any VC funding – he’s pretty amazing, and I hope he’s successful. Johnny Stine is a great example of doing research on a shoestring budget, and he exemplifies the entrepreneurial spirit. For most entrepreneurs however, raising money is a necessity. Entrepreneurs/scientists that have never had to raise before need to be prepared and understand what investors are looking for – especially now, since it will be more difficult to find capital. I usually refer people to The Entrepreneur’s Guide to a Biotech Startup, Fourth Edition, by Peter Kolchinsky. It’s available for download for free at Although it’s a bit dated – it hasn’t been updated since 2004 – it remains a great resource for scientists thinking about taking the plunge into entrepreneurship. Even to this day, I use it as a reference every once in a while.

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