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Today MaRS Innovation (MI) and the Korea Health Industry Development Institute (KHIDI) signed a five year global partnership agreement to commercialize the latest advances in biomedical and healthcare innovations which is expected to generate new startups worth over $100M.

This agreement will promote the co-development and commercialization of medical technologies and therapeutics between Ontario and South Korea in concert with industry and government. It will provide the resources to develop and implement novel technological solutions for today’s most urgent healthcare problems and create economic benefits for both jurisdictions.

Under the agreement, a joint commercialization platform with an infrastructure of collaboration will help Ontario and South Korean biomedical companies and health institutions commercialize and launch their products in each other’s markets.  KHIDI and the Top 10 South Korean research-driven hospitals have already expressed interest to collaborate with MaRS Innovation’s 15 institutions including the world renowned University of Toronto and its nine affiliated teaching hospitals. By securing global-level research capabilities and creating positive outcomes through commercialization initiatives, MaRS Innovation anticipates that this partnership will create 10 startup companies and over 100 highly skilled jobs in both countries.

“KHIDI has a proven track record of identifying promising early stage biomedical and healthcare projects and successfully developing them through clinical stages,” stated Dr. Raphael Hofstein, President and CEO, MaRS Innovation. “We believe that our joint pools of novel technologies and projects together with KHIDI’s medical development expertise and strategic collaborations with global players is a perfect match.”

The highlight of the agreement centers on a new global high-tech KHIDI Biomedical Business Hub in Seoul which MaRS Innovation will help to transform into a growth engine for South Korea’s economy.  Similar to Toronto’s world class biomedical and healthcare cluster, the KHIDI Biomedical Business Hub will become one of a handful of world leading biomedical and healthcare clusters.

KHIDI President Young Chan Lee said, “We are pleased to collaborate with MaRS Innovation, one of the world’s leading commercialization centres, to transform South Korea’s biomedical and healthcare research strengths into commercial opportunities through the newly created KHIDI Biomedical Business Hub and other initiatives. We view them as a valuable source of potential innovative technologies and look forward to working together towards the development of future therapies.”

This agreement represents a new era of collaboration to expand the knowledge-based economies of South Korea and Ontario, Canada. Dr. Lincoln Kim, CEO of ICE Ventures said “We are pleased to have arranged this global partnership with the support of the Ontario, Canadian, and South Korean governments and are excited to work with MaRS Innovation and KHIDI to implement this innovative collaboration and ensure its long term success.”

About MaRS Innovation

MaRS Innovation is the commercialization agent for 15 of Ontario’s leading academic institutions including the University of Toronto and its affiliated research hospitals, York University, and Ryerson University. Supported by the Government of Canada through the Networks of Centres of Excellence, by the Government of Ontario through the Ontario Centres of Excellence, and by its members, MaRS Innovation is a transformational partnership that turns research strengths into commercial opportunities through industry partnerships, licensing and company creation. MaRS Innovation represents over $1.47 billion of R&D funding annually, a portfolio of 60 companies, $160M in outside risk capital, and is credited with creating over 400 jobs.


The Korea Health Industry Development Institute (KHIDI) is Korea’s only public organization set up in 1999 with sights on promoting and developing the health industry in South Korea, while promoting national healthcare services.  Since its establishment, KHIDI has played a major role in the development of the nation’s health industry.  Apart from its primary function in Health Technology R&D, KHIDI has also taken the initiative in increasing competitiveness in different areas of the health industry, including pharmaceuticals, medical devices, food and beauty & cosmetics.

About ICE Ventures

ICE Ventures is a global commercialization company specializing in bringing next generation technologies to market by leveraging its networks in North America, Asia and Europe.  It provides integrated solutions from deal brokering to business development and is recognized for creating global-scale public-private partnerships at the highest levels of government and industry.  ICE Ventures currently manages a diversified commercial portfolio of biomedical/healthcare, industrial, and biometric technologies.

For media queries and clarifications, please contact:

In Canada:
Susanne Staer
Manager, Corporate Affairs
MaRS Innovation
Telephone: 1 647 260 7869

In South Korea:
Dr. Lincoln Kim
ICE Ventures
Telephone: 1 416 888 2535



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