Imperial Innovations Group has secured a new GBP50 million loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB) to support investment in the UK biotech and life science sector.
The new support from Europe’s long-term lending institution will be used by the leading technology commercialisation company to strengthen support for harness research ideas and turn them into commercial success.
Imperial Innovations works with Europe’s top four research intensive universities in Imperial College, Oxford, Cambridge, and UCL to identify exciting university research at an early stage and develop it to build substantial, high quality, well-funded and well-managed businesses.
The new loan will be used to support equity investment in life science spin-off companies and follows the successful investment of a GBP30 million EIB loan agreed two years ago.
“Since securing the first EIB facility in July 2013, the support of the EIB has allowed Innovations to invest more than GBP62m in early-stage life sciences companies, across twenty three companies, which includes the addition of seven new companies to our portfolio. The original plan was to commit this expenditure over a five year period, but we have been able to execute the plan in only two by virtue of the increasing maturity of our portfolio and the rich opportunities derived from our extensive network of academics, entrepreneurs, management teams and co-investors within the “Golden Triangle” of London, Oxford and Cambridge. To secure a second facility from the EIB is a clear endorsement of the quality, maturity and breadth of our portfolio, as well as our expertise in investing and developing both early stage and developing businesses,” says Russ Cummings (pictured), Chief Executive Officer, Imperial Innovations.
“Investment in knowledge driven and highly skilled sectors is crucial to strengthen Europe’s long-term global competitiveness. The European Investment Bank is committed to supporting investment that harnesses research to create skilled jobs and commercial success. Imperial Innovations has set a benchmark for transforming cutting-edge research into some of the UK’s most exciting early-stage biotech and medtech companies. The European Investment Bank is pleased to again support Imperial Innovations in helping new companies emerge from the world-class research emanating from the UK’s life science sector. I am confident that this new loan will allow the Group to increase its engagement and ultimately accelerate the translation of outstanding research into new and better treatments and techniques for patients,” sats Jonathan Taylor, European Investment Bank Vice President.
This additional funding from the EIB will enable Imperial Innovations to increase the rate and scale of its investment in both existing and new portfolio companies, in particular in the therapeutics and medtech sectors.
The strengthened cooperation between the European Investment Bank and Imperial Innovations reflects the EIB’s broader engagement to support innovation and research investment across Europe, including in the UK and the new loan is part of the dedicated InnovFin initiative to improve access to finance for research and innovation.
Last year the EIB provided EUR13.3 billion for investment to support innovation, skills and competitive, including support for spin-off companies and digital networks. EIB has recently started lending under the European Fund for Strategic Investment Initiative expected to support EUR315 billion of new innovation, infrastructure and SME investment.