Babraham Bioscience Technologies (BBT) held its seventh Biotechnology Investment Forum (BIF) this week at the Babraham Research Campus, bringing together 15 early-stage biomedical ventures from across the UK with over 30 biotechnology-focused investor groups. A range of companies, seeking investment from £350k to £7M, were selected to pitch their technology and business propositions. This included ventures developing therapeutics and diagnostics for lung cancer, drugs to tackle anti-inflammatory diseases, angiogenesis and drug-resistant infections.
The keynote lecture was given by Kevin Johnson, one of the founders of Cambridge Antibody Technologies and currently CEO of PanGenetics and adviser to Geneva-based venture capital investment firm Index Ventures. Around 90 delegates attended the Forum, sponsored by Taylor Vinters and supported by Cambridge Enterprise and ERBI.
Derek Jones, BBT’s Chief Executive said, “This is BBT’s most ambitious BIF to date with the largest number of delegates since the Forum was established. BBT plays a pivotal role in stimulating partnerships between entrepreneurs and investors through events like this. We hope that today’s Forum will have initiated relationships to facilitate the financing of early-stage bioventures.”
Dr Hermann Hauser of Amadeus Capital Partners said, “The BIF was an excellent conference which allowed investors to listen to a number of high-quality company presentations in one day. I found it stimulating and I am following up a number of companies for potential investments.”
Patrick Farrant, head of the technology team at Taylor Vinters said, "We are already advising some of the medical device and biotech businesses who pitched for funding today so it was rewarding to be able to help our clients by working with BBT, ERBI and Cambridge Enterprise to facilitate putting new and early-stage biomedical companies in front of Venture Capital and Business Angel investor groups interested in biotechnology. My team thoroughly enjoyed the day and have heard some eloquently pitched exciting propositions."
Two companies located in Babraham’s Bioincubator presented at the forum. UroSens are developing novel urine tests for detecting bladder and prostate cancer; this non-invasive, pain-free test with immediate results potentially offers savings to the NHS of $315M per year. Senexis, developing treatments and diagnostics for ageing related diseases like Alzheimer’s, are seeking funding for clinical development.
Mark Treherne, CEO of Senexis commented, “This proved to be a very useful day for Senexis that enabled us to meet a number of potential investors, who have already requested further meetings to learn more about our Alzheimer’s programmes. We look forward to next year’s event.” Established in 2006 by BBT, the Forum has proved an excellent means to encourage bioscience investment through presentation and networking opportunities for bioscience companies and investors.
Shawn Manning of Singer Capital Markets said, “This was a well organised and informative day, effectively showcasing a wide selection of new technologies pioneered by upcoming innovative biotech companies, both from the Eastern Region and elsewhere”.
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Notes to Editors:
About the Babraham Institute:
The Babraham Institute undertakes world-class life sciences research to generate new knowledge of biological mechanisms underpinning ageing, development and the maintenance of health. Our research focuses on cellular signalling, gene regulation and the impact of epigenetic regulation at different stages of life. By determining how the body reacts to dietary and environmental stimuli and manages microbial and viral interactions, we aim to improve wellbeing and support healthier ageing. The Institute is strategically funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), part of UK Research and Innovation, through an Institute Core Capability Grant and also receives funding from other UK research councils, charitable foundations, the EU and medical charities.
The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) is the UK funding agency for research in the life sciences. Sponsored by Government, BBSRC annually invests around £450 million in a wide range of research that makes a significant contribution to the quality of life for UK citizens and supports a number of important industrial stakeholders including the agriculture, food, chemical, health and well-being and pharmaceutical sectors. BBSRC carries out its mission by funding internationally competitive research, providing training in the biosciences, fostering opportunities for knowledge transfer and innovation and promoting interaction with the public and other stakeholders on issues of scientific interest in universities, centres and institutes.
28 May 2010