Novo Nordisk is a global healthcare company with more than 95 years of innovation and leadership in diabetes care.

Novo Nordisk A/S, Denmark ("Novo Nordisk") is awarding a research grant named “Co-creation Greenhouse.”

The Co-creation Greenhouse Winner will receive (i) a research grant of 50,000 USD, (ii) offer of mentoring from Novo Nordisk scientist(s) for up to three (3) hours per week over a six (6) months period and (iii) in-kind support, as deemed necessary by Novo Nordisk for achieving the agreed research goals.

Novo Nordisk is launching the process to identify the Co-creation Greenhouse Winners for 2021 and wishes to invite interested life-sciences and biotech start-ups to submit proposals (the “Competition”).

These Terms and Conditions (“Terms”) are applicable to the Competition.

The Entry for the Competition begins on 9:00 AM Eastern Standard Time (EST) on October 13, 2021 and ends on 11:59 PM EST on November 24, 2021, unless terminated earlier by Novo Nordisk (the "Open Call Period"). 

Proposals should focus on technology or biology platforms, including computational and systems biology, artificial intelligence and machine learning and experimental cellular platforms. Proposals should have disease agnostic potential to identify novel drug targets. Approaches that can enable advancements in the following areas are a plus but not a pre-requisite: Chemical/biological/device mediated oral delivery of biologics, tissue targeting and/or intracellular delivery of peptides, proteins, and oligonucleotide therapeutics, up- or down- regulation of intracellular targets, biomarker discovery and high-throughput multiplexed biomarker analysis enabling precision therapeutics and diagnosis, identification of endogenous/naturally occurring molecules able to modulate metabolism and inflammation. It is considered an advantage, but not a requirement, if the proposal can demonstrate a scientific connection or partnering academic team within one of Novo Nordisk’s therapeutic areas; diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, NASH, chronic kidney disease, hemophilia and other rare blood disorders or rare endocrine disorders.

The Competition is open for participation by individuals, teams, legal entities and organizations from across the innovation ecosystem, from start-ups, university researchers, students, incubators/accelerators, as well as other industry innovators (each referred to as a “Participant”). Note that although entries can be submitted by individuals, teams, organizations and unincorporated entities, only duly incorporated legal entities with a US federal tax ID number will be eligible to win a Co-creation Greenhouse.

An entrant team consisting of more than one individual and not representing a legal entity is referred to as “Participant Team”.

“Participant” in these Terms shall refer to individual Participants as well as each individual member of any Participant Team.

During the Open Call Period, Participants can submit their solution (“Entry”) via the Competition website:

By submitting an Entry, Participant accepts and agrees to comply with these Terms and with the decisions of Novo Nordisk, which will be final and binding in all respects, including Novo Nordisk’s right to verify eligibility, to interpret, amend or otherwise alter these Terms, and to resolve any claims or disputes relating to the Competition at any time, in any manner, in its sole discretion.

In these Terms, “Novo Nordisk” shall be deemed to include Novo Nordisk A/S, its affiliates, subsidiaries, successors and assigns.

Each Participant must be eligible to participate in the Competition and comply with the Terms, or such Participant or its Participant Team may be disqualified.

An individual is permitted to be part of more than one Participant Team and may enter as part of a Participant Team and as a sole Participant if they desire. Only one (1) person on a Participant Team will be considered Participant for Entry purposes (“Team Representative”).

To be eligible to enter the Competition, Participant must be above the age of majority in the country, state or jurisdiction of residence at the time of Entry. The Competition is void in all countries where prohibited by law.

Not eligible to participate in the Competition are:

  • employees, interns, contractors, representatives, agents and official office-holders of Novo Nordisk, as well as Novo Nordisk’s subsidiaries, affiliates and their respective directors, officers, employees, interns, and contractors, and the immediate family members (such as parents, siblings, children, spouses, life partners);
  • in the U.S.: patients participating in any U.S. government, state, or federally funded medical or prescription benefit programs, including Medicare, Medicaid, Medigap, VA, DOD, and TRICARE. This includes patients participating in a Managed Medicaid plan or who have Medicaid as secondary insurance.

Although individuals, teams, organizations and unincorporated entities are welcome to participate in the Competition, note that only duly incorporated legal entities with a US federal tax ID number will be eligible to win a Co-creation Greenhouse.

Participants who are health care professionals (HCPs) may be required to sign a separate agreement with Novo Nordisk to ensure compliance with Novo Nordisk policies regarding interaction with HCPs. Novo Nordisk will report any transfer of value to an HCP in accordance with U.S. Local/State/Federal laws. Additionally, any transfer of value may be subject to limitations by Local/State regulations.

If Participant is entering as part of a company or on behalf of its employer, these Terms are binding on Participant as well as the employer. If Participant is acting within the scope of the employment, as an employee, contractor, or agent of another party, by submitting the Entry, Participant warrants that such party has full knowledge of Participant’s actions and has consented thereto, including to these Terms and Participant’s potential receipt of the Co-creation Greenhouse. Participant warrants that Participant’s actions do not violate the employer or company’s policies and procedures.

Novo Nordisk reserves the right to verify eligibility and to adjudicate on any dispute at any time.

3.1. Entry Submission

By submitting an Entry, the Participant accepts these Terms. 

Entries must be submitted via the Competition email address and must include all information required, including but not limited to:

  • Participant (and, if applicable, Participant Team) name, email, phone number, and mailing address;
  • Team size and company composition including leadership team;
  • Scientific rationale for proposed research project including description of relevant data generated and scientific progress to date;
  • Proposed research project including project plan, timelines and key milestones;
  • Total funding at time of application;
  • Relevant IP rights;
  • Anticipated benefits of securing the Co-creation Greenhouse;
  • Confirmation that the Participant has read and understood the terms and conditions.

Entries may be submitted at any time during the Open Call Period. An Entry is not complete unless and until the Entry criteria above are properly followed. Submitted entries will not be returned.

Entries will be considered non-confidential. By submitting an Entry, Participant acknowledges and agrees that the Entry will not be treated as confidential. Participant is advised, before submitting an Entry, to consult a lawyer or patent attorney as to the desirability of seeking patents or other protection for the Entry.

By submitting an Entry, Participant warrants and represents that:

i. The Entry is the original work of Participant;

ii. Participant and, if applicable, Participant Team, has consented to the submission and use of the Entry in the Competition;

iii. The Entry does not contain any copyrighted material not owned by Participant or, if applicable, Participant Team and, to the best of Participant’s knowledge, does not infringe the rights of any third party, including but not limited to rights of publicity or privacy, moral rights, or any other property rights;

iv. Participant has the right to present the Entry and to participate in the Competition and there are no claims, judgments or settlements against or owed by Participant relating to the Entry or any information contained therein;

v. The Entry only contains names/likeness/identifying elements of persons for the use of which these persons have given their prior written consent to Participant.

In the Entry, Participant must disclose whether:

a)        Participant has any currently active formal partnerships with other pharmaceutical companies;

b)        Participant is a Health Care Professional (HCP).

Participant’s submission of the Entry is at its own responsibility and risk. Novo Nordisk shall not be liable for loss of data or illegal intrusion into its systems by third parties. 

3.2 Review of Entries

The entries will be judged and scored by a review panel chosen by Novo Nordisk (“Review Panel”).

The Review Panel will rank the entries based on criteria fit for a given submission.

  • Quality, feasibility, and scale of proposed solution or technology
  • The description of the unique technical features of the product or service, the proposed benefits to stakeholders, any evidence or proof-of-concept supporting the impact of the solution, and the ability to scale to a broad market.
  • Scientific rationale
  • The description of scientific rationale behind the proposed project
  • Capability of Participant to develop and execute solution
  • A description of the composition of the Participant Team and relevant background and experience of Participant or each Participant Team member that uniquely positions Participant to execute on this solution.

Novo Nordisk reserves the right to assess the entries in a manner determined by Novo Nordisk, which may include interviews or discussions with certain Participants.

3.3 Selection of Participants

As many as ten of the entries ranked highest by the Review Panel will be selected to progress (referred to as “Selected Participants”), subject to verification and compliance with these Terms. The Selected Participants will be notified by the email address they provided by November 29, 2021.

If an email notification is returned as undeliverable, or if Selected Participants do not respond within the required number of days specified by Novo Nordisk, or if any information submitted by Participant is found in non-compliance with the Terms, raises significant concern to Novo Nordisk, or if potential Selected Participants decide to decline selection as Selected Participants for any reason, Novo Nordisk shall have no further obligations to such Selected Participants and a place as Selected Participants may instead be awarded to a runner-up Selected Participant, time-permitting and at Novo Nordisk’s sole discretion.

The Selected Participants may receive questions or other feedback from Novo Nordisk after being selected as Selected Participants.

3.4. Selection of Winners

By December 7, 2021, the Selected Participants will present their proposed research project to the Review Panel in a meeting where Novo Nordisk will provide feedback to the Selected Participants’ project proposal. Based on the outcome of this meeting, Novo Nordisk may choose not to move forward with any Selected Participants in the competition. In such case, Novo Nordisk will make reasonable efforts to notify the Selected Participants by email within 2 days of the meeting.

Based on the feedback provided by Novo Nordisk, the Selected Participants are allowed to revise their proposed research project in order to achieve better fit with the Co-creation Greenhouse model.

By December 16, 2021, the Selected Participants will present their final proposed research project to the Review Panel in a review meeting where Novo Nordisk will judge the Selected Participants’ final project. Novo Nordisk can select up to three (3) winners of the Co-creation Greenhouse (the “Winners”). Novo Nordisk may elect not to select any Winners.

To be eligible to win the Co-creation Greenhouse, the Winner must be a duly incorporated legal entity with a US federal tax number.

The Co-creation Greenhouse Winner will receive: (i) a research grant of 50,000 USD, (ii) an offer of mentoring from a Novo Nordisk scientist for up to three (3) hours per week over a six (6) months period and (iii) in-kind support, as deemed necessary by Novo Nordisk, for achieving the agreed research goals.

The research grant of 50,000 USD will be paid in monthly installments over a six (6) months period. The research grant may only be spent as agreed with Novo Nordisk in the research project plan. The research grant may not be spent on travel costs.

The Winner will be notified via the email address they provided by December 16, 2021. 

If an email notification is returned as undeliverable, if a Winner does not respond within the required number of days specified by Novo Nordisk, if any information submitted by Participant is found in non-compliance with the Terms or raises significant concern to Novo Nordisk in Novo Nordisk’s sole discretion, or if a Winner decides to decline the prize for any reason, Novo Nordisk shall have no further obligations to such Winner and the applicable prize will be forfeited and may be awarded to a runner-up Winner, time-permitting and at Novo Nordisk’s sole discretion.

If, once selected as a Winner, a Selected Participant is of the opinion that their solution cannot be further discussed or developed without the disclosure of any confidential or proprietary information, Novo Nordisk may decide to enter into a confidentiality agreement with Participant to ensure that the mutual interests are well protected.

The Co-creation Greenhouse is non-transferable and substitutions or cash redemptions will not be allowed. Except where prohibited by law, all tax liabilities are the responsibility of the Co-creation Greenhouse Winner. Novo Nordisk will not be responsible for any tax deductions which may be necessary. Participant acknowledges that he/she will not be entitled to any additional payment by reason of any award(s) being subject to any tax, levy, or other charge in any jurisdiction.

The Co-creation Greenhouse Winner is responsible for any additional costs and expenses associated with the acceptance and/or use of the Co-creation Greenhouse. All details of the prize not specified in these Terms shall be determined by Novo Nordisk in its sole discretion.  

Participant accepts the conditions stated in these Terms, agrees to be bound by all decisions of Novo Nordisk regarding the Competition, and warrants that he/she is eligible to participate in the Competition as specified in these Terms.

Participant indemnifies Novo Nordisk for any damages (including payment of reasonable attorneys’ fees) in connection with Participant’s participation in the Competition and Participant’s acceptance and use of the Co-creation Greenhouse.

Participant indemnifies Novo Nordisk for any damages (including payment of reasonable attorneys’ fees) in connection with any claim for misappropriation or infringement resulting from (i) Participant’s infringement of any third party’s intellectual property rights; (ii) Novo Nordisk’s mentoring of Participant; or (iii) Novo Nordisk’s involvement with any idea, invention, information or materials comprised in the Entry.

Participant acknowledges that Novo Nordisk may presently, during the Competition, and/or in the future, be developing internally, or receiving from other parties, ideas, concepts, solutions and information that are similar to the Entry. Accordingly, nothing herein shall prohibit Novo Nordisk from independently acquiring, developing, or having developed for it, products, concepts, systems, services, or techniques that are similar to or compete with the products, concepts, systems or techniques contemplated by or embodied in the Entry.

Participant will not in any manner undermine the integrity of the Competition. Participant will not use any device, software or routine to interfere with the proper working of the Competition Website or with the intention to damage, interfere with or surreptitiously intercept or expropriate any system, data or personal information.

i. No offer or payment for products or services.

This Competition and the award of the Co-creation Greenhouse are not intended to be, nor shall these be construed as, an offer or payment made, whether directly or indirectly, to purchase, lease or order of any item or service of Novo Nordisk.

ii. Compliance with requirements.

Determination of compliance with Entry, technical, and other requirements and these Terms will be in the sole discretion of Novo Nordisk. Novo Nordisk reserves the right to disqualify any Participant whose participation may, or whose Entry may, cause controversy or negative publicity for the Competition, Novo Nordisk or any third parties. Participant shall not use the Novo Nordisk name, logo, corporate identity or images without Novo Nordisk’s prior written consent.

iii. No liability.

Novo Nordisk assumes no responsibility for the following: any problems, technical malfunctions or delays in electronic operations or transmissions; entries that are lost, stolen, incomplete, damaged, garbled, destroyed, misdirected or not received for any reason; destruction of or unauthorized access to, or alteration of entries or related material, failed or unavailable hardware, network, software or telephone transmissions, damage to Participant’s or any person’s computer and/or its contents related to or resulting from participation in the Competition; or any errors in these Terms or in any advertisements or correspondence in connection with the Competition.

iv. Participant consent.

Participant consents, authorizes and grants to Novo Nordisk the irrevocable and unrestricted right and permission to take, copyright, use and publish printed, video, audio, or photographic images of Participant and Participant’s statements, in whole or in part, in conjunction with or without Participant’s name, or any reproductions thereof related to the Competition for use with internal and external audiences, including the right to edit these materials to ensure compliance with applicable rules and regulations.

vi. Novo Nordisk decisions.

Novo Nordisk’s decisions are final and binding in all matters relating to the Competition.

vii. Precedence.

In the event of any inconsistency between these Terms and any other provisions published or otherwise communicated in relation to the Competition, these Terms shall prevail.

viii. Competition cancelation or suspension.

Novo Nordisk reserves the right to cancel or suspend the Competition at any time at its sole discretion.

Entries will include information relating to identified or identifiable natural persons (“Personal Data”), in particular name, title, email address, mailing address, phone number and age of Participants as well as names of members of Participant Teams.

By submitting Personal Data of members of a Participant Teams, the Team Representative represents and warrants that all necessary permissions from all members of Participant Team have been obtained.

Novo Nordisk collects, processes, and/or uses Personal Data submitted for the purposes of the Competition in accordance with these Terms, in particular for verifying the identity of Participants, for administering the Competition, and to contact Participants for the organization and execution of the Competition.

Novo Nordisk may anonymize and aggregate data collected through the Competition Website for statistical purposes to help improve its products and services.

Participant expressly consents to: (i) the collection, use and retention by Novo Nordisk of Participant’s personal and business information contained in the Entry for all purposes (including promotion and publicity) related to the Novo Nordisk Innovation Partnering Program and for the purposes set forth more fully on Novo Nordisk’s website (, as well as for use in a publicly available Selected Participant and Winners list; and (ii) the publication of Participant’s name, picture and entrepreneurial story on the Competition Website, Novo Nordisk websites as well as on Novo Nordisk’s social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, etc.).

Participant agrees that any and all disputes, claims and causes of action out of or connected with the Competition shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class, mass or other collective action.

All issues and questions with regard to the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Terms, or the rights and obligations of Participant and Novo Nordisk shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of the state of New York, USA, without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules, which would cause the application of the laws of any other jurisdiction.

The exclusive jurisdiction and venue of any action with respect to the subject matter of these Terms shall be the state courts of the State of New York or the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York; and Participant submits itself to the exclusive jurisdiction and venue of such courts for the purpose of any such action. Any and all claims, judgments, and awards shall be limited to actual out-of-pocket costs incurred, including costs associated with participating in the Competition, but in no event attorneys’ fees. Participant hereby waives all rights to (i) claim or be awarded any punitive, direct, indirect, incidental, and consequential damages and any other damages, other than for actual out-of- pocket expenses, and (ii) to have damages multiplied or otherwise increased, including for willful patent infringement.