London, UK - 25 November 2014 - Imperial Innovations (AIM: IVO, “Innovations” or “The Group”) has led a £50m series B funding round in Cell Medica (“Cell Medica” or “the Company”) alongside co-investors Invesco Asset Management and Woodford Investment Management. Innovations has committed £15m to the round and following this new investment, will hold a 27.9% stake in the issued share capital of the Company.
Cell Medica is a cellular immunotherapy company which develops, manufactures and markets patient-specific products for the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases. The Company was co-founded by Innovations and the Chief Executive Officer Gregg Sando, who, after a career in investment banking based both in London and New York, completed his Immunology MSc degree at the medical school of Imperial College London.
Cell Medica will use the investment capital to progress further the development of cellular immunotherapy products with the potential to transform the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases. The Company’s lead oncology product, CMD-003, is under investigation in the CITADEL Phase II clinical trial for the treatment of patients with advanced lymphomas associated with the Epstein Barr virus. Comprised of the patient’s own immune cells, CMD-003 offers a targeted approach to cancer treatment with very limited side effects or toxicities.
Innovations first invested in Cell Medica in 2007 in a seed funding round. The Group has led each of Cell Medica’s subsequent funding rounds, including the Company’s Series A investment in 2012, which brought in Invesco and CPRIT (Cancer Prevention Research Institute of Texas) as investors. As at 31 July 2014, the Group had invested a total of £4.8 million in Cell Medica and held 25.2% of the Company’s issued share capital, with a net investment carrying value of £8.0 million. The current investment will be subject to a modest uplift in value.
Russ Cummings, CEO of Imperial Innovations, said: “We are delighted to support this substantial funding round, which will provide Cell Medica with the funding it needs to advance its clinical programme. The size of the round and our commitment to it, reflects our belief in the company’s management and technology.
“At the time of our recent fundraising, we announced that we had identified a select number of businesses within our maturing portfolio which we are ready to scale with pace and ambition. Cell Medica is our first major investment post-fundraising and the first of a number of announcements over the coming months as we begin to put our capital to work.”
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About Imperial Innovations - www.imperialinnovations.co.uk
Imperial Innovations Group plc creates, builds and invests in pioneering technologies developed from the academic research within the ‘Golden Triangle’ broadly bounded by London, Cambridge and Oxford, which is home to the UK’s four leading research-intensive universities.
This area is home to many new technology companies through its proximity to the academic communities of Imperial College London, the University of Cambridge, the University of Oxford and University College London, as well as other leading research institutions.
Imperial College London, the University of Cambridge, the University of Oxford and University College London collectively have research income of £1.4 billion per annum and are ranked as four of the top ten Universities in the world (source: QS World University Rankings 2014/15).
Innovations supports scientists and entrepreneurs in the commercialisation of their ideas through the licensing of intellectual property, by leading the formation of new companies, providing facilities in the early stages, providing investment and encouraging co-investment to accelerate development, providing operational expertise and recruiting high-calibre management teams. It also runs an incubator in London that is the initial home for many of its technology spin-outs.
Since admission of its shares to trading on AIM in 2006, Innovations has raised more than £346.0 million of equity from investors, which has enabled it to invest in some of the most exciting spin-outs to come out of UK academic research. In addition, the Group has a £30.0 million loan facility from the European Investment Bank (EIB) for investment in biotech and therapeutics businesses.
During the period from admission on AIM up until 31 July 2014, Innovations has invested a total of £176.0 million across its portfolio companies, which have raised collectively investment of £822.5 million.
About Cell Medica
Cell Medica is a cellular therapeutics company engaged in the development, manufacturing and marketing of cellular immunotherapy products for the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases. Cellular immunotherapy is a new form of medical treatment which has the potential to transform the treatment of cancer in the years ahead. The Company has recently opened the ground-breaking international CITADEL Phase II clinical trial exploring the therapeutic benefit of a novel cancer immunotherapy product for the treatment of advanced NK/T cell lymphoma. The financing for this trial was provided in part by the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas. The Company is targeting a range of cancer applications associated with the Epstein Barr virus including lymphoma, leukaemia and nasopharyngeal carcinoma.
In the infectious disease field, Cell Medica is developing Cytovir CMV for the treatment of cytomegalovirus infections and Cytovir ADV for the treatment of adenovirus infections. Both applications are aimed at treating and preventing infections in patients who are profoundly immunosuppressed following a bone marrow transplant. The clinical development of Cytovir CMV has been funded in part by The Wellcome Trust.
Issued for and on behalf of Imperial Innovations by Instinctif Partners.
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