The World’s Premier Pre-Seed & Seed Start-up Accelerator for Central and Eastern European countries

LABENA VENTURES – The first venture accelerator in Central and Eastern Europe focused on scaling innovations in the fields of medicine, biotechnology, food and pharmaceuticals enables access to funds worth over €100 million

Labena group – a regional leader in provision of process, analytics, research and development solutions and services for the pharmaceutical, medical, food, petrochemical industries, and adjacent research and development fields in academic institutions – is launching Labena Ventures: the first corporate start-up accelerator for innovative solutions in the fields of biotechnology, medicine, pharmaceuticals, food and environment.

It is the first and only accelerator of its kind in Central and Eastern European countries. Labena Ventures accelerator is open to all start-ups, individuals, universities with innovative solutions in 17 countries.


»At Labena we are well aware that in Central and Eastern Europe there are ever more young people, start-ups, students and researchers, universities and institutes, coming up with new findings leading to potentially lifesaving or life-changing solutions that too often only end up in a drawer or result in a scientific publication at best. Our mission is that scalable innovations, ideas and initiatives with commercial potential see the light of day and are put into practice and used, so that they can help to accelerate developments in biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and healthcare, benefiting the humankind globally« says Borut Čeh, CEO at Labena group and Co-Director at Labena Ventures.


»We know from experience that for any start-up to succeed in commercialising their innovation and scaling their business successfully, a significant investment of time, financial resources, good understanding of the market as well as high quality infrastructure – that is not always easily and readily accessible – are required. Therefore, we at Labena Ventures created a comprehensive support system that combines, not only over a 100 excellent international mentors and state of the art infrastructure and equipment, but also connections with potential investors who together manage venture funds more than €100 million. We are convinced that we are the right partner to help start-ups and innovative teams bring innovative solutions to end-users faster and more efficiently« says Dr. Nedeljko Milosavljević, Co-Director at Labena Ventures.


Labena Ventures is designed to leverage knowledge, connections, research and development infrastructure and laboratories to help and empower all those who wish to apply, test, develop, commercialise, and scale their innovative solutions in the fields of biotechnology, medicine, pharmaceuticals and food industries, and environment. Our goal is to help universities, colleges, start-ups, R&D institutions, and individuals help create investable and scalable innovations and facilitate connection with pools of venture capital in Europe, US and around the world. This means taking an idea, project or start-up to investors and closing investments in projects that have the potential to scale globally. Labena will provide access to own know-how, use of own facilities and available resources« adds Boštjan Čeh, Head of Business Development at Labena group and Co-Director at Labena Ventures.


Anyone with innovative project or solution in the fields of interest can apply to participate in the programme from March 14th to May 15th, 2023, at

From all applicants, up to 40 innovative teams will be selected by Labena Ventures expert committee and invited to attend a fully paid 3-day event of training sessions to upskill on business and presentation skills, as well as the skills to strategically position their idea or project in the marketplace. The committee will then identify 10 most promising innovative teams to join the acceleration phase. Teams will be able to access support of over 100 international experts in the fields of entrepreneurship, finance, biotechnology, etc. and finally pitch to potential investors, including business angels, representatives of banks and funds.

Labena, which celebrates 30 years of business this year, started with the distribution and servicing of laboratory equipment. Today, they operate in the fields of laboratory and process analytics to support the pharmaceutical, food and medical industries. They also place a strong emphasis on research and development in pharmaceutical and bio-pharmaceutical, biotechnology and diagnostics, working with major pharmaceutical companies and partners from around the world. Since its foundation in 1993, the company has twice received the Slovenian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s award for successful economic achievements, first in 2004 and again in 2018. In 2019, it was nominated for the Gazelle Fast-Growing Companies Award in Slovenia and received other regional awards. The company has offices in 6 countries but operates globally. In 2015, they established R&D laboratories in the fields of biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and healthcare. Labena has a wealth of experience and knowledge in this field and with the new platform aims to connect 17 markets and expand its business into new markets.