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LeapUp - Open Innovation Program

Technological innovation has profoundly changed clinical practice and the relationship between health professionals and patients. Aware of this reality and of its role in the healthcare ecosystem, AbbVie is looking to collaborate with promising startups, to gain a clear vision of market trends and to be at the forefront of emerging technologies, open to unexpected novel opportunities that improve people’s lives.

The LeapUp Open Innovation Program aims to create an environment of collaborative innovation with startups that have the right fit with current challenges identified in specific therapeutic areas, giving them the opportunity to apply their projects with a leading client and a powerful brand to add value to the health ecosystem. 

5 winners selected out of the 59 startups that applied!

LeapUp has received 59 applications from 17 different countries, among which Portugal, Spain, England, Belgium, Switzerland as well as Nordic and Eastern European countries.

After a thorough evaluation process, by a team of more than 35 AbbVie and Co.Innovation Lab people, we have selected 14 startups to present their initial pitches. From those, 10 moved forward to the matchmaking phase, where we discussed together and in more detail which could be the possible match between the startups solutions and AbbVie’s challenges.

The final step was a new round of adapted pitches with specific ideas to be co-worked, from which AbbVie has selected the 5 most promising startups – congratulations to the winners!


Now the selected startups have the opportunity to further grow their business by exploring synergies, co-creating and co-developing new paths and future business opportunities directly with AbbVie Portugal in a Collaborative Partnership.

Watch the video  to know more about the program and how exciting it was so far!


Who Were We Looking For?

In this Open Innovation Program, we were looking for startups that demonstrate the value of their solution to AbbVie Portugal and that can make a significant contribution to improve the lives of people with:

- Atopic Dermatitis

- Inflammatory

- Lymphoma

- Migraine

The Challenges


Optimize healthcare professionals’ and patients’ experience in accessing information, converting a deeper knowledge of personal preferences, behaviors and information needs into the most meaningful and relevant communication to each individual, contributing to a better impact on patient's lives.


Accelerate the process of diagnosis, referral & implementation of novel treatment approaches and swiftly deliver the most recent information about guidelines, treatment targets and standards of care.


Improve disease awareness and patient health literacy to enable quicker access to the right specialist, increased knowledge of treatment options and understanding when current treatment stops achieving the desired goals.


Promote the collection & aggregation of real world clinical data, based on reported outcomes, to support better informed decisions by healthcare institutions, payors and the pharma industry towards a quicker access to novel therapies.

Know more about The Promoters


AbbVie’s mission is to discover and deliver innovative medicines and products that solve serious health issues today and address the medical challenges of tomorrow. We work to make a remarkable impact on people’s lives in several key therapeutic areas: immunology, oncology, neuroscience, eye care, virology, women’s health and gastroenterology, as well as through the products and services available in our Allergan Aesthetics portfolio. For more information about AbbVie, visit our website and follow @abbvie in Twitter,  Facebook,  LinkedIn or Instagram.


The Nova SBE Innovation Ecosystem (IECO), is a community  of innovators working towards a better and more sustainable future. By joining students, academia, corporates and startups, we’re creating a melting pot of changemakers ready to take on the future.​

As a key player of this ecosystem, the Co.Innovation Lab, leverages Nova SBE’s ecosystem, as a co-creation living lab to co-discover, co-create, and co-implement new solutions. Since our creation in 2017 we embrace open innovation programs, as part of our mission to create impact by transforming businesses and organizations in a collaborative and experimental way.