Chiswell_600300This year, the BIA is hosting a series of events across the length and breadth of the UK as part of our investor-ready roadshow. Below, we’ve written up the highlights from our third and most recent breakfast, which took place at the Babraham Research Institute last month. With several more locations planned through 2015, look out for one near you soon

On 21 May, the BIA visited Babraham Research Institute in Cambridgeshire for the third in our series of investor-ready breakfast events, to hear the latest from some of our members on their investment experiences and to discuss how best to make your company investor ready in 2015.

The breakfast started off with an interesting talk from Kymab’s Chief Executive Officer, David Chiswell – a great example of a company that has really caught the appetite of investors recently with the completion of their US$90 million Series B financing. The investment, which included a fresh US$50 million from Woodford Patient Capital Trust plc and Malin Corporation plc, will ensure Kymab can maximize the potential of its Kymouse platform and advance its proprietary pipeline of first-in-class therapeutic human monoclonal antibodies. David expressed the significance of their new investors understanding what he was trying to achieve, which allowed automatic buy in and additional investment for the company.

IMG_1397Jane Dancer, Chief Business Officer at F-Star, followed on with an interesting discussion about the importance of company structure in accessing investment funds. Jane discussed the advantages of F-star’s flexible modular structure to reflect their modular technology base, by creating the two asset-centric vehicles F-star Alpha and F-star Beta. Essentially forming a new company every time a promising platform is established, ensuring greater financial flexibility and to enhance the type of funding deals that could be done.

IMG_1402Autifony Chief Business Officer, Barbara Domayne-Hayman, next discussed how Innovate UK’s Biomedical Catalyst has been transformational in prospering start up companies. Firstly discussing the impact on Puridify, a previous One Start winner, who have received £3 million in Biomedical Catalyst funding to date and secondly Autifony itself. Biomedical Catalyst funding has allowed Autifony to progress their schizophrenia drug into clinical trials and broaden their portfolio to develop novel pharmaceutical treatments for hearing loss. Barbara finished by outlining that with a clear commercial case and rigorously following the guidelines, the Biomedical Catalyst is an achievable government initiative that can transform a promising company.

IMG_1406Finally, the session was concluded by serial biotech entrepreneur Andy Richards – recently awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for his services to investment in the life sciences industry – who provided an overview of the current economic market. Andy took the opportunity to emphasise the recent success of the sector, urging people to look for investment now when times are good. Andy also discussed his thoughts on the shift in the biotech ecosystem, as more start up companies look to scale up and the challenges of doing so.

The morning was brought to a close by some interesting discussions, outlining the need for more bright young talent to move into the small pool of seasoned CEOs and also the real challenge of ensuring companies do not sell too early.

The BIA will be heading to London in July for the next in our series of breakfasts. If you would like to attend or find out more, please visit our website.