Bruntwood SciTech Reveals Alderley Park R&D Fundraising Performance For 2023
By Bruntwood SciTech
Businesses based at Bruntwood SciTech’s Alderley Park secured almost £50 million in new R&D-linked funding in 2023, as the North West innovation campus continues to support groundbreaking research. As part of the funding, businesses based at the UK’s largest single site life science campus have secured backing for major projects relating to cancer and brain tumour treatment as well as gene editing technology.
Home to more than 250 science and technology businesses operating across a broad range of life science and drug discovery disciplines, Alderley Park is owned and operated by Bruntwood SciTech, the largest dedicated property platform serving the UK’s innovation economy - a joint venture between Bruntwood, Legal & General and Greater Manchester Pension Fund. Set in 400 acres of parkland, the campus offers state of the art, flexible laboratory and office space, as well as access to universities and the NHS through Bruntwood SciTech’s partner network. The campus provides a supportive ecosystem for businesses at every stage of their growth and fundraising journey, from seed through to equity and from start-up to mature, established players.
Of the businesses that successfully secured funding in 2023, biotech game-changer CellCentric raised the most capital, attracting a £19.3 ($25) million investment from pharmaceuticals giant Pfizer. Operating out of Cambridge alongside Alderley Park, the company’s first-in-class p300/CBP inhibitor is showing potential in treating relapsed refractory multiple myeloma, as well as other haematological malignancies. The deal will also give CellCentric access to expert support and guidance from in-house talent at Pfizer.
Recognised in the Top 10 UK Venture Seed Deals by the BIA’s UK BioTech Financing Report 2023, in September, Alderley Park-based Pencil Biosciences attracted £5.6 million in seed funding for its novel gene modulation technology and aims to transform the gene-editing landscape for use in therapeutics and industrial biotechnology. In addition, biomolecular medicine specialists, Sutura raised £7.8m, also featuring in the top 10.
Other companies who successfully raised investment at the Park include medical device start-up, QV Bioelectronics and Nodus Oncology, as well as clinical-stage biotechnology company Redx Pharma whose share issue generated £14 million in investment for its work on targeted therapies for fibrotic disease and cancer in areas of high unmet medical need - resulting in recognition in the BIA report as a Top 10 UK Follow-On Finance Deal. Businesses based at Alderley Park are able to take advantage of Bruntwood SciTech’s investment partners, through the Biospheric Network - which forms part of the wider ecosystem. This includes the GM Life Sciences Fund by Prateura and Northern Gritstone of which Bruntwood SciTech and Bruntwood are founding investors in, respectively.
Alongside investment into companies located at Alderley Park, 2023 has also seen an additional 95,000 sq ft of lab and office workspace let to new and existing customers across both the Mereside life science campus, and tech hub - Glasshouse. This includes Gentronix, Peak Software, Globachem, Veramed and Venn Digital.
Dr Kath Mackay, Chief Scientific Officer at Bruntwood SciTech, said: “Such successful fundraising for so many of our customers in 2023 is a real show of confidence in the world-leading R&D being delivered at Alderley Park. Our approach to developing innovation clusters and thriving campus ecosystems underpins many of these deals by providing businesses with the stability as well as access to the expertise and equipment that they need to scale. Far too often, life science businesses with otherwise sound missions are let down by a lack of infrastructure or access to adequate lab space. What we’ve been able to cultivate at Alderley Park is going a long way to helping many businesses in this difficult position.
“Supporting regional hubs like Alderley Park – and others in cities like Leeds, Birmingham, Liverpool and Glasgow – is a key focus for Bruntwood SciTech in 2024. They will be central to the UK realising its ambition of becoming a life science and tech superpower, but only if we continue to invest in them.”
The major investment milestone for Alderley Park comes after Bruntwood SciTech announced in October that it would be investing half a billion into the UK’s innovation economy and would be welcoming the UK’s largest local authority pension fund, Greater Manchester Pension Fund (GMPF) into the partnership, alongside existing partners Bruntwood and Legal & General. This is the first direct and active investment by a local authority pension fund into a UK-wide science, tech and innovation specialist property platform. Its structure also enables other UK local authority pension funds to co-invest efficiently and on an asset-by-asset basis, so that long term, patient capital can play a crucial role in the growth of the domestic innovation sector.
Now the largest dedicated property platform serving the UK’s innovation economy, Bruntwood SciTech aims to create a £5 billion UK-wide portfolio that can support 2,600 high-growth businesses by 2032.