Working Paper BETA #2006-21

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Title : Entrepreneurship in biotechnology: The case of four start-ups in the Upper-Rhine Biovalley

Author(s) : Antoine Bureth, Julien Pénin, Sandrine Wolff

Abstract : This paper explores entrepreneurship in biotech through the in depth analysis of four new ventures located in the Upper-Rhine Biovalley. One of the strengths of this paper is the presence of both successful cases of entrepreneurship and of cases of failures. This gives the opportunity to discuss the role of several factors on the performance of a new biotech venture. Three points particularly comes out of this study: The importance of public science, without which new biotech firms could hardly exist; the role of the patent system, the importance of which we link to the business model adopted by the firm; and the importance of collaborations, which we study through the concept of distributed entrepreneurship.

Key-words : Intellectual property rights, patents, science, distributed entrepreneurship, collective invention.

JEL Classification : D2, O3