The founder of Ribomed Biotechnologies, Inc. intends to open a small-business accelerator as part of her company’s upcoming facility in downtown Phoenix.
Michelle Hanna, CEO and president of the 5-year-old, genetics-based detection company currently located in south Phoenix, intends to move Ribomed labs and offices into a converted office building at the corner of Van Buren and Seventh Street by December. The site is adjacent to the future headquarters of the Translational Genomics Research Institute.
One-third of the building will house the “Phoenix Biotechnology Accelerator,” which Hanna envisions providing space, infrastructure support, and shared resources for start-up biotech companies with limited profit margins and capital.
Hanna’s downtown acquisition is prime real estate for collaboration with Phoenix’s growing biosciences community, which includes TGen and the proposed Phoenix Biomedical Campus. The latter is a joint effort to extend the University of Arizona medical school into the Valley by partnering with Arizona State University, which will also have a significant downtown presence in the near future.
The two-phase plan will include constructing an additional six-story building on site within three years.
Hanna said that Ribomed’s own maturation as a biotech company in the Valley demonstrated the need for an accelerator in the downtown area, according to the Arizona Republic. She thinks the potential linkages of the accelerator, which she has dubbed “P-Bio,” with TGen and the universities are a logical step.
“This will be the perfect complement to the non-profit research,” Hanna told the Republic. “This is my chance to give back.”
The City of Phoenix is poised to assist Ribomed with “P-Bio,” and will discuss its role at the next city council meeting.
For more information:
“Research park part of biotech firm plans,” The Arizona Republic, 08/22/2004
“Ribomed lands $3M biodefense contract,” 01/23/2004