In 1985, MBI’s Board of Trustees embarked on a strategy to fully develop the potential of Massachusetts Biomedical Initiatives as a public/private partnership for accelerating health and life science commercial development. In doing so, they built upon the potential of the strong commercial and academic base in Massachusetts and the promise of the UMass Medicine Science Park development within the central part of the state.
In 1987, Massachusetts Biomedical Initiatives formed a venture capital arm, Commonwealth BioVentures Inc. (CBI). CBI invested over $8 million of public funding and over $50 million of private money in new technology driven companies, before focusing on incubation in the late 1990’s.
Over the years, MBI has developed seven major incubator centers and currently operates four totaling over 30,000 SF of incubator space. By the year 1996, the company had helped establish 20 new companies and helped expand the Biotech cluster in Worcester County. Since the year 2000, MBI has helped to create 117 companies and over 550 jobs – the majority of which remain in Massachusetts and Worcester County. It is estimated that, since inception, MBI has assisted over 150 companies and created over 2,500 jobs.
MBI has developed a proven model of success in aiding startup companies commercialize science. MBI has served as a national model for leveraging public sector funds with private sector investments to fuel economic development.