Customer Case Study

How Shadow Lake Group has found business efficacies in tracking and follow-up on partnering opportunities with Inova



The company

Shadow Lake Group is a globally focused advisory firm with a highly experienced team of multidisciplinary specialists. Collectively, their management team has over 80 years and $13.5B in transactional and business experience, making Shadow Lake Group well positioned to navigate through every step of complex transactions to deliver customized strategic advisory services. Their clients range from early-stage biotechs to large pharmaceuticals based all over the world. Shadow Lake Group has clients based in Europe, North & South America, Africa and Asia.

The challenge

Shadow Lake Group needed a more efficient way to track, monitor, and share their progress with their multiple clients and growing business. Initially, they implemented Salesforce. However, Salesforce was challenging and expensive to sufficiently adapt to the life sciences partnering process. As a result, Shadow Lake Group was simultaneously tracking some information in Salesforce and juggling Excel files for the rest. It was an inefficient, frustrating, time-consuming process.

The solution

When it came time to look for a new solution, Shadow Lake Group cast a wide net. They went beyond basic CRMs and evaluated many different types of tools, including solutions for deal management and private equity firms. When they evaluated Inova’s biopharma partnering platform, they knew they had found the right solution.

The benefits

Shadow Lake Group uses Inova to efficiently track multiple deal processes and interactions on behalf of their clients. They easily import meetings from biopharma conferences and store key emails and documents in one, secure place. With everything centralized, they instantly see where they’re at in their discussions. Now, Shadow Lake Group can easily create comprehensive, professional reports on their activities in seconds, reassuring their clients that they’re in good hands.

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“Inova checked all the boxes. It’s designed for biopharma business development, integrates with partnering conferences, and enables easy, professional reporting.”

Cathy Miner
Cathy MinerManaging PartnerShadow Lake Group

The story

Shadow Lake Group is a global boutique advisory firm based in Toronto, Canada. They assist and advise a wide range of life science companies, from seed-stage biotechs to large pharma companies, in business development. A key part of Shadow Lake Group’s work is providing clear, comprehensive reports to their clients that present partnering activities and discussions.
Previously, Shadow Lake Group used Salesforce to track their partnership discussions. However, Salesforce was cumbersome, requiring a great deal of adaptation, improvisation, and ingenuity to be used for life sciences business development. For example, there was no easy way to track conference attendance, asset information, or therapeutic areas of interest. As a result, Shadow Lake Group was simultaneously tracking some information in Salesforce and juggling Excel files for the rest. It was an inefficient, frustrating, time-consuming process.
Shadow Lake Group decided to look for a platform better adapted to their needs, eventually selecting Inova’s expert biopharma partnering platform.

“Inova checked all the boxes. It’s designed for biopharma business development, integrates with partnering conferences, and enables easy, professional reporting,”

Cathy Miner
Cathy MinerManaging Partner

Life Science Expertise

Since Inova is designed for biopharma partnering, it was easy to adapt to Shadow Lake’s processes. Every step of the way, Shadow Lake Group was supported by their dedicated Customer Success Manager (CSM), from the first demo through implementation to daily usage. A dedicated CSM is a critical aspect of Inova’s offering, helping users get started faster, make adjustments more easily, and maximize the value they get from Inova.

“A dedicated Customer Success Manager has been a gamechanger. She’s always happy to help, offer advice, and answer questions. We know that we can rely on her, she’s like an extension of our team. It’s such a refreshing change,”

Cathy Miner
Cathy MinerManaging Partner

All their partnering data in one place

Today, Inova is a daily tool for Shadow Lake Group. They carefully track all of their interactions with potential partners, including partnering conferences, emails and key documents. By keeping everything in one place, they save time and streamline their processes. Instead of having to search through multiple sources they know exactly where to find the information they need.

Better meetings at conferences

Using the BIO Connector, Shadow Lake Group imports their meetings from conferences in seconds. With the complete history of who they’ve met, what was discussed and when, they prepare for meetings more efficiently.

"Being able to easily import our conference meeting history has improved the quality of our meetings and made the preparation a lot easier. The BIO Connector enables us to track things that we simply couldn’t before,"

Cathy Miner
Cathy MinerManaging PartnerShadow Lake Group

Powerful, easy reporting

One of the biggest changes for Shadow Lake Group has been reporting. Up until now it has been a very time-consuming process. Creating professional, easy to understand reports quickly is critical to their work. Using Inova, Shadow Lake Group creates customized reports in seconds, demonstrating the progress of their discussions and further reassuring their clients that they are in good hands.

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Why our customers love Inova


Inova bridges the challenge of two externally-facing function within AstraZeneca, R&D and Business Development, and gets them operating in a seamless fashion: the right hand knows what the left hand is doing.

Helen SmithBusiness Operations Manager

We use Inova as our exclusive tool for BD&L project management and reporting, resulting in high quality data and deal flow. We enjoy working with Inova’s experts and solutions, they continue to exceed our expectations.

Cornelius KurzGlobal Project Manager BD&L

I wanted a solution for my Technology Scouting team that required minimal IT involvement. The BD and AM teams were already using Inova and happy with it. I am very glad we also chose Inova, it’s intuitive and easy-to-use.

Janet HallidayAssociate Vice President, FCT & External Technologies

Inova has enabled Lilly to standardize processes, enable more consistent data across the entire External Innovation community and place data more directly into the hands of business development leadership.

Darren CarrollSenior Vice President, Corporate Business Development
Novo Nordisk

Inova is built exactly for what we do, pharma partnering. It helps us work together as one company.

Neil AndersonSearch & Evaluation Director

Inova puts the information I need at my fingertips, helping me decide which partner is the best fit for my product portfolio.

Claudio VeronesiEuropean Distributors Business Manager

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