UKI2S expands fund by £37m to boost support of British innovation  

25, July 2022 – The UK Innovation and Science Seed Fund (“UKI2S”) today announced the expansion of its patient capital fund by £37m. UKI2S is an early-stage investment fund backed by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) and other public bodies. Together, they are supporting the most ambitious UK innovators at seed and beyond to facilitate sustainable growth, enhance the health and security of society and deliver economic gains from the UK’s publicly funded research. UKI2S is managed by Midven Ltd which is part of Future Planet Capital Group.

The expansion of the fund builds on UKI2S’s successful track-record in nurturing early-stage firms furthering UK science and innovation. The additional funding will enable UKI2S to initiate and expand investment across the following sectors to help solve critical challenges:

Synthetic biology

A highly innovative area of research that applies engineering principles to biological systems to enable novel solutions to major global challenges. There is a strong opportunity across this industry for the UK to lead in creating and delivering significant economic and societal impacts on the global stage.

Knowledge assets

The UK’s public sector is a key source of innovation, with rich research and insights that will shape our future. UKI2S will work closely with the new Government Office for Technology Transfer (GOTT) to provide investment capital to exploit the UK’s public knowledge assets including intellectual property, innovation, and data. GOTT is due to launch later this year.

Fusion energy

Fusion promises to be a low carbon and sustainable part of the world’s future energy supply. UKI2S will support companies contributing to and arising from the UK’s world-recognised fusion technology cluster, attracting further investment, and developing the supply chain and skills base to accelerate future fusion delivery.

Defence and security

UKI2S’ dedicated defence and security portfolio backs early-stage companies that can positively impact defence and security. It invests in SMEs developing products and services that are capable of dual use in both civilian and defence and security sectors.

Publicly funded research centres, science & innovation campuses, and the Catapult centres

UKI2S will continue to back early-stage companies developing innovative products and services, in addition to technology emerging from public sector partner laboratories, those based on UKRI partner campuses and those working with the UK Catapult Network.

Andrew Muir, Investment Director at Future Planet Capital Group and Fund Principal for UKI2S, said: “The Fund has a strong track record of generating impact from publicly funded science and research hubs across the UK. The fund’s expansion will help drive innovation with our partners, across research campuses and from synthetic biology industry, in addition to accelerating the development of high growth potential businesses in defence and security, fusion and exploiting the UK’s knowledge assets.”

Dr Liz Kirby, Director of Innovation at the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), said: “I am delighted to announce the expansion of UKI2S as we boost investment in the UK’s most disruptive early-stage companies that are leading the way in finding solutions to the problems that we face across society.”

About UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (UKI2S)

UKI2S is a national seed investment fund that nurtures innovative businesses from great UK science to leverage private investment and grow jobs. The Fund is backed by UKRI, Dstl and other public bodies and is independently managed by specialist venture capital firm Midven, part of Future Planet Capital, the impact-led, global venture capital firm built to invest in high growth potential companies from the world’s top research centres.

The full list of the fund partners are: UKRI – Science and Technology Facilities Research Council, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, Natural Environment Research Council, Defence Science and Technology, UK Atomic Energy Authority, BEIS, UK Health Security Agency, Animal and Plant Health Agency, National Physical Laboratory, James Hutton Institute

UKI2S provides the patient, long-term committed capital and strategic advice these companies need to flourish. Over the past decade and more, the fund has built a substantial track record of companies that between them have attracted over £650m of later stage investment. Learn more at https://ukinnovationscienceseedfund.co.uk/ or follow us on Twitter

Companies backed by the Fund include Cobalt Light Systems (innovative technologies for non-invasive chemical analysis spun out of STFC and sold to Agilent), Tokamak Energy (a leading global commercial fusion energy company spun out of UKAEA Culham), Quethera (exploiting synthetic biology for gene therapy, sold to Astellas) and Crescendo Biologics (a clinical stage immune-oncology company based on research carried out at the Babraham Institute).

About Future Planet Capital

Future Planet Capital is the impact-led venture capital firm built to back growth companies from the world’s top universities and research ecosystems. Headquartered in London, but investing globally, the firm manages over $400M for institutional investors having backed over 180 companies across geographies and stages. Future Planet Capital’s goal is to profitably solve the world’s greatest challenges in climate change, education, health, sustainable growth & security.

Contacts

Fund related: Maitland/AMO

Jonathan Cook, jcook@maitland.co.uk

Kate Pledger, kpledger@maitland.co.uk

T: 020 7379 5151

UKRI: Michelle Snowden, Michelle.Snowden@ukri.org

T: 07596 888 943

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