Imperial College London and its technology commercialisation company Imperial Innovations, have jointly raised over £20m from a private placement to institutional investors, it was announced today.
The private placement of shares in Imperial Innovations is the first by a UK university-owned technology transfer business.
The College will use its £10m from the sale to support its financial strategy of building freely disposable capital for its academic mission. Imperial Innovations will invest its £10m back in the spin-out companies that it helps to generate, speeding up the process of formation, development and growth.
The College remains a 71% stakeholder in the company that it formerly owned. It has agreed an exclusive 15 year pipeline agreement with Imperial Innovations which allows the company to commercialise technology originating from Imperial's research activity.
Sir Richard Sykes, Rector of Imperial College London, said: "This initiative is part of Imperial's strategy to build freely disposable capital to support its academic mission. We are very supportive of this placement and we wish Imperial Innovations every success in this new phase of its development. We look forward to continuing our mutually beneficial relationship with the company."
Susan Searle, Chief Executive Officer of Imperial Innovations said: "The success of this private funding round confirms Imperial Innovation's reputation as a UK leader in the commercialisation of intellectual property. The company has the resources to build substantial value from technology commercialisation"
Innovations has generated revenues of £30m from spin-outs and licenses since 1997. Together with Imperial's academic inventors it has established equity holdings in 54 spin-out companies and completed a total of 74 licence deals. Over 1,000 jobs have been created through its spin-out companies.
Recent examples of activity include Ceres Power, a fuel cell technology company built on research from the College's Department of Materials which floated on the stock market in November 2004, valued at £66m; HydroVenturi, a company based on Department of Physics research, developing a novel method to generate power from tidal currents, completed a £2.5m funding round in March 2005; and ComMedica, a spin out from the Department of Bioengineering, which won a £33m contract from the National Health Service in 2004.
Imperial Innovations also works successfully with the College's Tanaka Business School, providing a valuable resource in the development of business propositions and giving MBA students the chance to get involved with the commercialisation of research.
Source: Eurekalert & othersLast reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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