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TMC partners with Baird Capital for venture funds

August 23, 2018

Health-care startups in Houston will have new access to capital as part of a new partnership announced Thursday between the Texas Medical Center and the private investment firm Baird Capital.

While the TMC Venture Fund launched last year has been providing funding to early-stage startups with a health-care focus, Baird Capital can offer investments in more established businesses that are looking to scale up, TMC president and CEO Bill McKeon said.

“This is yet another major milestone for establishing the Texas Medical Center as the Third Coast of life sciences,” he said in an earlier statement.

Securing access to capital was one of the initial plans for TMC’s innovation efforts. Other goals previously met include the opening of a startup accelerator, coworking space and a center for device innovation.

Baird Capital had previously been collaborating with the Medical Center, providing speakers and advisers for its startup classes. When considering which venture fund to partner with, McKeon said, Baird stood out for its commitment to the health-care industry and its expressed interest in further developing the TMC’s startup ecosystem.

“Texas Medical Center’s unique position as a leading expert in the health-care and life-sciences sectors will be an invaluable advantage to Baird Capital and its portfolio companies,” Baird president and CEO Steve Booth said in a statement.

Baird, an employee-owned financing firm based in Milwaukee, will open a Houston office in the Medical Center for its venture fund arm in the coming weeks.

McKeon suspects Baird Capital’s Houston presence will not only incentivize locally based venture funds to commit to investing but will also bring in major players from across the U.S.

ileana.najarro@chron.com

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