King’s Commissioner of the Groningen Province René Paas gave this year’s Groningen Entrepreneur Award to Innocore CEO Jan Hendriks last week, in a sold out MartiniPlaza. After careful deliberation, the judges chose Innocore over finalists Holthausen Group and Team 4 architects.
Groningen based InnoCore Pharmaceuticals develops pharmaceutical drugs based on biodegradable proteins (polymers). Their patented invention is called sustained release, where administered drugs are released in the body over a period of time, meaning less injections and hospital visits for patients. Another added benefit of sustained release, is that there are no peak levels in dosage, reducing potential side effects and medical complications.
Innocore works with big pharmaceutical companies all across the globe. “Our closest customer is 600 kilometers away”, a visibly proud Jan Hendriks explains. “So we didn’t need the award for local fame or recognition”, he smiles. “We signed up for our team, the people who passionately do great work in our labs every day.”
In their report, the judges praised InnoCore for their innovative product development process and groundbreaking patents and licenses, as well as greatly improving the quality of life for patients around the world. According to the judges, InnoCore also underlines the fact that Groningen has a very advantageous climate for Life Science and Health companies competing on a global level.
This year’s panel of judges consisted out of previous award winners, such as Rienk Jan van der Kooi (Eska) and Erik Jan Worst (Ophtec). The other judges were Provincial Deputy Patrick Brouns, Siem Jansen (NOM), Paul Schreuders (XPAR Vision), Heleen van Balen (Commercial Club Groningen), Eelco Koehoorn (VNO-NCW Noord) and Erik van ‘t Hoff (MKB Noord).