With the recent turbulence and uncertainties, it is not surprising that many of us are reassessing our future career options. The last year has come with its fair share of challenges, but the team of entrepreneurs and industry experts behind Kinetic Labs view 2021 as the year of opportunity. If you have been thinking about what your life will look like post Covid-19, then do not rule out becoming your own boss. In this article we outline the key questions to ask yourself and how Kinetic Labs can support your lab-based business from start-up though to investment.
“Times of uncertainty and upheaval, although difficult to live through for many can be a source of inspiration for the budding entrepreneur. Sudden changes in the day-to-day life of society create new and exciting opportunities and the disruption caused by the pandemic has given people the opportunity to rethink their lives and what they want for the future. Add in a favourable funding environment with low interest rates and now may just be the right time to make the leap into owning and running your own business.”
John Breen, Kinetic Labs Centre Manager
Are you ready to start you lab based business?
There is no doubt that starting a business is hard. The last year has given many new entrepreneurs the time to conduct research for their future companies. Proper planning with the right strategy is key to making any business succeed, even if it is during a pandemic.
Starting up a life science or environmental technology company is an enormous undertaking, but with a highly effective business plan, it absolutely can be done. The key to creating an emergent start-up lies in market knowledge and meeting consumer needs.
When it comes to start-ups, being small and nimble can give you an advantage. For example, research has shown that small pharma companies are often much more productive than the pharma giants. See our earlier post on ‘The role of bio-incubators in addressing big pharma’s productivity problems’. So, why are start-ups and small pharma companies more intrinsically productive than big pharma? It can be partly explained by the tendency of start-ups to have healthier attitudes to risk and an ability to adapt and take advantage of emerging technologies. Big pharma have recognised this and rather than compete, have started to take a more hands on approach in nurturing start-ups with a longer term aim of acquiring a stake or buying out the successful ones.
Do you think you have a viable business? Then you need to seriously consider renting lab space at Kinetic Labs where you can hit the ground running and get your product or idea researched and/or produced as rapidly as possible. To help with your decision we have developed this simple pros and cons list.
Reasons to start your own lab based business
Test your idea
How will you know if your business can work if you do not try? Kinetic Labs offers the ideal space to test your idea with minimal risk.
Fully supported with advice from our team of industry experts you can find out if your business idea is viable.
Build a network and share the experience
You are not alone! When you join Kinetic Labs, you will be working alongside entrepreneurs trying to do the same thing as you – start a new life science or environmental technology business.
Benefit from networking and knowledge sharing opportunities with like-minded entrepreneurs.
Advice from industry experts
Sometimes you will need advice at critical business milestones, and we can connect you with the resources and supports to succeed. At Kinetic Labs, our expert team understand the realities of running a business from start-up phase right through to growing an established company.
The Kinetic Labs community is an incredible network of experts in the science sector. Richie Walsh, Seamus Kilgannon and Patsy Carney are all hands-on Directors of Kinetic Labs and are supported by Kinetic Labs Manager, John Breen:
- Richie is Head of Enterprise at the Local Enterprise Office (LEO)
- Seamus is a serial entrepreneur and Owner / CEO of precision engineering company SCHIVO
- Patsy is a role model for any start-up – building EirGen Pharma from scratch to a successful established company
- John understands the needs of start-ups having worked in the fine chemicals and pharmaceutical industries
As a start-up company you will have access to this wealth of industry knowledge to support your journey. Industry experts are available to provide confidential advice at key business milestones for all companies renting lab space.
Develop your business with no equity obligations
Companies joining us do not need to give away a percentage of their business. As a start-up, you can focus on developing your products and processes with no equity obligations to Kinetic Labs. In addition, you can rent lab space at Kinetic Labs to take on new projects without the risk of a long-term lease.
Get investment ready and access funding
With a solid strategy in place, getting funding to back up your business may not be as hard as you think it is. Interest rates are at an all-time low, meaning loans are more affordable. In addition, savvy investors are looking for more return on their funds by investing in high potential start-ups.
See how we can help you access additional lab facilities and funding.
Reasons not to start your own business
Your business is not viable
What is your unique selling point? How much competition is in the market already? Have you researched your market? Start-ups often fail when they are not solving a market problem.
“Nine of the top 20 reasons for start-up failures – and five out of the top 10 – were related to customers – not meeting customers’ needs, not listening to them or even ignoring them. In fact, the number one reason why start-ups fail was “no market need.”
You can’t avoid hard work and dedication. Our team of industry experts will tell you that you won’t work less when building your own business than when you are an employee. If you are not prepared to go above and beyond then success will be hard to come by.
Tough decisions / risk
Everything you decide to do has a margin of risk. Are you willing to walk away from your career and income to build your own business? One of the main traits of a true entrepreneur is being a risk taker. Great opportunities often come from risk taking and you have to be willing to accept that risk for a potential life changing gain.
Cash flow and funding
Can you access funding to keep you going until your business is profitable? If you need cash flow or credit flow, it can take a good 3 to 5 years to get your business to the point where it’s solid, sustainable and making you a decent income.
Think you are ready to start your lab-based business?
Think you are you willing to give it a go and start your own business? Ask yourself these 5 key questions:
- Have I identified a new market need?
- Can I serve this need in a way that is substantially better than the current alternatives?
- Am I qualified to solve this problem?
- If I don’t have the experience, can I hire others or find a partner to help me?
- Do I have access to funding that can tide me over until my business is profitable?
Join Kinetic Labs – an incubator lab space to drive innovation
The right business location is key to successfully launching your lab-based start-up. If you are just starting out or looking for space to create and innovate, Kinetic Labs may be the place for you!
For start-up companies, Kinetic Labs offers turnkey laboratory and office space, entrepreneurial support and networking opportunities. Everything on offer is set up to make running your start-up more effective and cost-efficient including:
- Super-fast internet
- 24/7 access
- Mail and packaging handling
- Front desk service
- Member events
- Free parking
Based in Waterford, our co-working labs offer a modern spacious environment for start-ups and are surrounded by a cluster of business and technical support centres including the:
- Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT)
- Pharmaceutical and Molecular Biotechnology Research Centre (PMBRC)
- South Eastern Applied Materials Research Centre (SEAM)
- Local IDA, Enterprise Ireland and South East Business & Innovation Centre (SEBIC) offices
Contact us to arrange a tour and see how we can help launch your start-up.