Company: City of Hope
Liaison(s): Dave DiGiusto
City of Hope is a leading research and treatment center for cancer and other life-threatening diseases. It includes the Comprehensive Cancer Center, the Beckman Research Institute, and the Irell and Manella Graduate School of Biological Sciences. The City of Hope celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2013 and is located in Duarte, California. Research at the City of Hope focuses on cancer biology, diabetes, immunology, and virology. The Beckman Research Institute at City of Hope has developed a novel gene-modified stem cell therapy to treat HIV. To support this therapy, the City of Hope has just completed a human clinical trial which demonstrated the safety of the autologous stem cell product. To help the Beckman Research Institute commercialize its technologies, the City of Hope engaged KGI to assess the feasibility of commercialization through creation of a spin-off company. The City of Hope HIV Therapies TMP team was charged with creating a business plan and commercialization strategy for this stem cell therapy. To accomplish this goal, the team: conducted a competitive analysis of current HIV therapies; performed primary and secondary market research regarding the RNAbased science of this therapeutic technology; and studied the unique challenges of commercializing a genetherapy product. After reading key scientific articles and speaking to subject matter experts in venture capital, regenerative medicine, regulatory approval, technology transfer, and biotech operations, the team developed a comprehensive business plan. The plan highlights the market potential for HIV gene therapeutics; identifies critical marketing risk factors; and recommends an IP, marketing, operations and development strategy for the new firm. The business plan also includes detailed financial projections and identifies a series of funding milestones for equity investors to fund its operations.