Coverage of the Start-up Stadium at BIO 2022 (Part 1) 


Forty-four early and seed stage companies are presenting at this year’s Start-up Stadium held during the BIO 2022 Conference in San Diego.

These companies were selected to present live during the conference from among the more than 150 companies that submitted applications including their pitch decks in April. The applications were reviewed by a panel of 37 investor judges and were scored on the basis of:

  • Business model feasibility
  • Clarity of intellectual property description
  • Differentiated value versus current market alternatives of the start-up’s product/service if successful
  • Feasibility of the start-up’s financial projections
  • Thoroughness of risk assessment
  • Total appeal to attract investment

There were five categories for finalist companies this year: Therapeutics and Vaccines; Diagnostics; Digital Health, Platform Technology; Medical Device. In order to participate, companies must meet the following criteria:

  • Raised less than $10M since inception
  • Have previous business or pitch competition experience
  • Have fewer than 20 employees
  • Have not previously been named a BIO Start-up Stadium winner


Bernard V. Fallon, Managing Director, Industry Research, Investor Outreach, and Education at BIO, explains that “this year’s Start-Up Stadium also includes for the first time two additional groups included among the finalists who were screened by partners”. The California Life Sciences Association WIB-FAST program includes companies founded or co-founded by women. The SPARK at Stanford program includes academic technology transfer entrepreneurs.

In San Diego, the companies will present to BIO attendees, and 18 judges will be on hand to provide live feedback. The winner of the competition will be announced next month and will receive a complementary one-year BIO membership, a feature on the BIO blog and a free registration to BIO 2023 in Boston.

The highest scoring seed stage company will receive fast-track admission in the Fall 2022 or Spring 2023 cohort of The Innovation Space’s Science Inc. virtual accelerator program and/or spotlight position in The Innovation Space’s monthly Spark Factory virtual event.  Moreover, the company will also be considered for up to a $200k First Fund investment (residency in The Innovation Space required for First Fund investments).

This year’s finalists include companies from across the US as well as Australia and Taiwan. The Big4Bio regions are all represented among the finalists with one company from Philadelphia, four from the San Francisco Bay Area, three from San Diego and one from Massachusetts.


More on those companies next week in Part 2!