Become a Part of the San Antonio Life Science Hub
San Antonio’s rich history and cultural flair add to the attraction of doing business here. The city has a vibrant downtown area with numerous festivals and outdoor events all year long, enabled by the beautiful weather. Exercising outdoors has never been easier with year-long sports leagues and numerous city-wide parks, hiking trails, and bike trails. The high quality of life is supported by the active and well-supported life science industry. Companies quickly discover that San Antonio’s life science industry has turned a collaborative culture into an economic engine.
A summary of advantages for businesses in San Antonio can be found here.
Working in SA
Entrepreneurial Support Organizations
San Antonio supports its start-up community at many levels from: assistance starting the business, incubators, accelerators, contract R&D providers, grant writers, funding, and more. The Institute for Economic Development and the Small Business Development Center Network at UTSA offer free business advice, technical training, research, market analysis, and strategic planning for entrepreneurs and small business owners. UT Health’s TechNovum hosts an incubator program for its faculty and students. UTSA’s Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) fosters innovation and entrepreneurship among UTSA students, faculty and the San Antonio community by providing education, experiences, resources, and support to create new technology-based ventures and serve as a catalyst for the regional entrepreneurship ecosystem. Both university programs include competitive funding opportunities. UTSA and UT Health San Antonio have combined to manage VMS San Antonio, a sister program of MIT’s Venture Mentoring System, to advise and assist entrepreneurs. Enventure San Antonio provides education, networking, and experiential learning opportunities for advanced degree trainees and post-docs and new professionals interested in life science innovation. Cooley provides many legal resources on their website to help life science entrepreneurs.
The life science industry is also supported by innovation hubs: Watershed Idea Foundry (medtech), Crown Scientific (biotech), VelocityTX (life science), Geekdom (IT), and the Maestro Entrepreneur Center (Hispanic focus). Launch SA is an entrepreneurial business center that provides direction, education, mentorship, and community to small business owners. Startups San Antonio keeps a pulse on the start-up community in San Antonio and resources available.
For a list of support organizations in San Antonio, click here.
Incentives to Relocate to San Antonio
The City of San Antonio recognizes the significant and positive impact that the life science industry has on the community. Competitive incentives to locate a business in San Antonio include: tax abatement, fee waivers, economic development grants, fee waivers, and industrial bonds. Many of these programs exist at the local, state, and federal levels to support San Antonio’s life science industry.
In addition to incentives, for a summary of advantages for businesses in San Antonio, click here.
Educational Institutions and Workforce Development
San Antonio is committed to the growth of our workforce in the healthcare and bioscience industry. Among the area’s 28 colleges and universities, a variety of programs for the healthcare and life science industry are available. San Antonio is home to two large public universities: UT Health, including the Long School of Medicine, and UTSA, a high-growth university with over 32,000 students and two campuses. Both universities have combined to create a unique biomedical engineering Ph.D. program. The San Antonio Uniformed Services Health Education Consortium (SAUSHEC) is a renowned graduate medical education program with over 600 residents in training. The Medical Education and Training Campus (METC) graduates over 16,500 Army, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard certified medics, corpsmen, and medical technicians, partners with the College of Allied Health Sciences (CaHS), which grants Associate of Science degrees. Trinity University, St. Mary’s University, and the University of the Incarnate Word are the largest private universities in San Antonio. Alamo Colleges and the University of the Incarnate Word (UIW) offer technical training and degree programs, specific to the healthcare and life science industry. UIW also includes the School of Osteopathic Medicine.
UT Health’s Voelcker Biomedical Research Academy offers high school sophomores a summer program to learn about health careers in science and medicine while working in an internationally recognized research facility. Enventure San Antonio offers free programs for post-docs and new professionals to acquire career experiences outside of their traditional training. There are also several area high schools dedicated to preparation for healthcare and bioscience careers.
For a list of educational institutions in San Antonio, click here.
Savvy investors have learned that San Antonio has a lot of medtech and biotech innovation to support. Investment in San Antonio companies happens locally, nationally, and worldwide in the form of: family offices; angels; local, state, and federal grants; and, VCs.
For more details and specific fundraising opportunities, click here.
Office space is readily available in San Antonio with a 2019 vacancy rate of 12-17%, depending on the space needs, with an average rate of $25/sqft. There are also numerous coworking spaces available in San Antonio, with several specializing in life science companies with clean rooms and lab space. San Antonio has significant land available to build new facilities in close proximity to other healthcare and bioscience companies, such as the 350 acres available at Brooks.