Europe’s pharma industry faces many healthcare challenges. This programme introduces them to start-ups with innovative solutions.


EIT Health’s Start-Ups Meet Pharma is an acceleration programme that connects start-ups developing innovative solutions for chronic health conditions with leading European pharma partners.

By bringing partners together, the programme allows start-ups and pharma companies to address major health challenges collaboratively.

Is it for me?

The programme targets start-ups with functioning products or prototypes that have already entered the market or are about to enter the market. Companies are assessed on the quality of their business idea, their fit for a specific challenge set by pharma partners, and their motivation and level of commitment.

The journey

The programme began with challenges. In 2020, the following five challenges have been released in collaboration with four EIT Health Partners – Amgen, Bayer, Beiersdorf and Boehringer Ingelheim:

  • Encourage continuity in treatment strategy and treatment optimisation for postmyocardial infarction patients
  • Choose the right treatment for Multiple Myeloma patients
  • Disruptive Gene therapies, cell therapies and delivery technologies for different therapeutic areas
  • Improve the condition of diabetic skin
  • Portable Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) Diagnostic Tool

Find out more about the challenges here.

Start-ups that have potential solutions to these challenges will then participate in four modules of business training to prepare them for collaboration with pharma companies.

Module 1 (15 -19 June 2020, in Heidelberg, Germany): Innovation and entrepreneurship training. Pharma experts will run tailored workshops for start-ups focused on the tools and methods needed to successfully build a business.

Module 2 (29 June-3 July 2020, in Heidelberg, Germany): How to collaborate with big players in the market.

Module 3 (September 2020): Start-ups visit pharma companies to discuss collaboration opportunities.

Module 4 (November 2020, in Heidelberg, Germany): During Demo Day, start-ups pitch in front of investors and EIT Health stakeholders.

Important dates
  • Application period: 10 February-14 April 2020
  • Start of programme: 15 June 2020
  • Final week of programme: November 2020
The application process

Apply through the EIT Health Optimy platform

External partner


Barbara Costa
| Activity Leader | EIT Health Germany
Matteo Consonni
| Second contact point | EIT Health Germany