While Nasdaq sleeps, the City of London is waking up to life sciences

8 August 2023 | Muriel Cozier

Data from the BioIndustry Association (BIA) and Clarivate indicates that the second quarter of 2023 saw a steady growth in financing activity of the UK’s life science sector.

UK-headquartered life science and biotech companies secured a total of £382 million in venture capital and public financing during the second quarter of 2023, up from £295 million in the previous quarter. The growth, against the backdrop of the global market downturn, was largely driven by venture capital investment, the BIA said. In addition, the UK government has secured an agreement with pension providers to allocate a minimum of 5% to unlisted equities through defined contribution pensions funds and other long-term savings by 2030.

The BIA added that the UK Biotech financing 2023: March-May 2023 report showed that investment was spread between early and late stage private companies, with seed investment, in particular, rebounding after what the BIA said as a ‘sluggish start to the year.’

‘Our sector is demonstrating resilience and growth amid challenging times,’ said Steve Bates OBE, CEO of BIA. ‘The Chancellor’s […] leadership is unlocking further new sources of capital in the UK’s pensions industry and City of London, which will supercharge the growth of innovative UK businesses and deliver financial returns for savers and the economy. It shows that the Nasdaq sleeps while the City of London is waking up to life sciences.’

The positive news from the BIA and Clarivate came as the UK government announced £33 million joint industry investment with Kindeva Drug Delivery, which is producing a new generation of low-carbon respiratory inhalers. The investment will create 40 jobs and safeguard 218 existing jobs across Kindeva’s sites in Clitheroe and Loughborough, UK.

The government funding is the sixth investment delivered through the Life Sciences Innovate Manufacturing Fund (LSIMF) and its predecessor the Medicines and Diagnostics Transformation Fund, which has supported UK life science with £340 million in joint government and industry backing in the last financial year. In May 2023 the UK government announced the £650 million Life Sci for Growth fund, described as a ‘war chest to fire up the UK life sciences sector’.

Kindeva is a global contract development and manufacturing organisation specialising in pharmaceutical drug-device combination products such as inhalers and medicated patches. David Stevens, Global Chief Commercial Officer at Kindeva said: ‘This joint investment creates a myriad of new opportunities for colleagues within the UK, as significant technical and regulatory expertise is required in the development and manufacturing of complex inhalation pharmaceutical products.’

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