Bruce Booth from Atlas Ventures has a fascinating story on his blog. We won’t steal Bruce’s thunder. Instead, we encourage you to read it there first.
The gist of the story is how a small company was able to develop a highly innovative diabetes product to the point where Merck acquired the company. This resulted in a nice return for their investors. Interestingly:
At its peak in 2010, the company had only 17 employees, a very small in-house lab, and leveraged a great network of collaborators at the MGH, Joslin, JDRF, NIH, and elsewhere. And yet they were able to develop their adjustable glucose sensitivity platform, confirm the sugar response and safety profile in five different preclinical large and small animal species, and receive approval for doing Phase 1 clinical studies.
We have written about the emerging capital-efficient biotech company before. We are big fans of the model where we see more small/fast/efficient companies emerge from both academia and industry spin-outs. More companies will result in more jobs, more investment opportunities, and more products making it to the market. Let’s hope for more SmartCell stories in 2011 and beyond.