Herzliya’s IDC, Mayo Clinic join forces for new medical tech

This fall, a new entrepreneurship program will help participants from the idea stage to VC capital and beyond

Shoshanna Solomon is The Times of Israel's Startups and Business reporter

Students at Herzliya's IDC. (Courtesy)
Students at Herzliya's IDC. (Courtesy)

Experts from the US nonprofit medical practice and research center Mayo Clinic will join forces with the entrepreneurship program of IDC Herzliya and lead a push to develop and implement new medical technologies.

The cooperation will be led by Amir Lerman, a professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic and director of its cardiovascular research center, who was recently appointed to head the clinic’s new initiative of investment and cooperation with Israeli companies and technologies.

“The cooperation with Mayo Clinic will expose students to the forefront of technology and innovation, and pinpoint the issues facing health systems worldwide,” said Nava Swersky Sofer, managing director of IDCBeyond, the entrepreneurship program of the Herzliya-based private university. “This cooperation opens a number of possibilities for entrepreneurship students, from exploring new horizons to establishing innovative ventures.”

The new IDCBeyond program will include multi-disciplinary studies in the fields of technology, biomedicine, globalization and sustainability. This will be followed by an ideation process and the setting up of new ventures, with the help of mentors from academia and industry, within six months.

IDC's Nava Swersky Sofer (Courtesy Adi Cohen Tzedek)
IDC’s Nava Swersky Sofer (Courtesy Adi Cohen Tzedek)

The program is a full-time one-year graduate program, aimed at a “small group of creative, pioneer academics, with a deep passion for entrepreneurship,” IDC said in a statement. The participants will be selected from diverse backgrounds, including science, medicine, engineering, computer science, business, design and architecture, from Israel and abroad.

“Understanding the challenges of biomedicine, sustainability, technology and globalization being taught by experts, such as the leaders from Mayo Clinic, will form the basis for addressing problems and initiating startups designed to find solutions to major problems facing humanity,” Swersky Sofer said.

Mayo Clinic recently announced the establishment of “The Mayo Clinic Israeli Startup Initiative,” which aims to collaborate and invest in Israeli startups. The goal is to promote cooperation with companies at various stages, from the concept phase to clinical trials.

“We see IDCBeyond as an opportunity to reach highly motivated entrepreneurs, who, with assistance and professional support provided through the program, will be able to develop technology and solutions for global health and medical issues in order to ease diagnosis and treatment,” Mayo’s Lerner said.

IDCBeyond will open in October 2016 and is the initiative of Prof. Uriel Reichman, the president and founder of IDC. The program will combine academic content and the establishment of an enterprise, from the initial idea stage. Participants will gain access to venture capital funds as well as professional networking opportunities and the support of mentors and industry experts, IDC said.

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