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Bradford and iBridge launch UK-China healthcare technology accelerator programme


The University of Bradford is teaming up with iBridge TT International Limited, a Chinese technology transfer company focusing on health and bioscience, to establish a new programme that will enable UK technology teams to accelerate the launch of their healthcare technologies and products into China and global markets.

The programme will introduce UK-based companies and translational scientists to partners and investors in China in order to accelerate the development and commercialisation of healthcare technologies and enter the Chinese market. The programme recognises that working with Chinese partners can expedite market access, generate capital and bring much needed resources to UK technology enterprises, whilst accelerating the process of bringing new treatments to patients, in China and beyond. In addition to fully funding the accelerator programme, iBridge will also assemble considerable project funding support from local government, from financial institutions and from individual investors in China.

Paul Thorning, Director of Open Innovation at the University of Bradford, said: “The overall goal of the programme is to combine UK and China strengths to develop better healthcare products. Our intention is that the collaborations created through this partnership will deliver benefits to patients, not only in China but world-wide.”

Chairman of iBridge, Wah Chu, said: “The programme is a three-way win-win-win, through enabling UK companies to realise opportunities in China, through enabling China to access more cutting-edge health technology, and ultimately jointly accelerating the speed at which pioneering new treatments can reach global markets.”

The programme will involve at least two workshops held in China, each bringing UK and Chinese academics, companies and clinicians together in a highly interactive process designed to stimulate creativity, support decision-making and build mutual trust. Following each workshop, the resulting UK-China partnerships will receive ongoing support from the University of Bradford and the iBridge team to ensure that new enterprises have the best chance of succeeding in the China market and beyond.

Following a formal signing of an agreement, witnessed by Dr. Jiansheng Du, Life Sciences Specialist for the UK Department of International Trade, the iBridge team met with leading healthcare technology development institutions, including the Yorkshire and Humber Academic Science Network; Medilink; Medipex; Devices for Dignity; and Nine Health CIC. The event was held at the University of Bradford’s flagship national Digital Health Enterprise Zone facility.