Latest Share Ventures News
Aug 10, 2021
Medicines Discovery Catapult & We Share Ventures launch funding model for pharma start-ups 10 August 2021 × The funding partnership will look to create and sustain financial opportunities for medicines discovery start-ups focused on areas of unmet patient needs. We Share Ventures has developed a funding model that moves away from typical financing, by offering loans across a period of five-to-eight years, giving start-ups tie to grow and produce revenue. The company raises grants through philanthropic donations and awards the money to start-ups with conditions such as a long-term repayment based on success milestones. We Share Ventures will work with MDC’s Syndicate’s programme; patient-focused partnerships that connect patient insights with industry know-how to progress promising ideas, positioning them for further development and investment. They are currently focused in three areas: infections associated with cystic fibrosis, hearing loss and tinnitus, and psychiatric disorders. While venture capital has been highly successful in many areas in driving world-class medicines discovery, many areas such as hearing and antimicrobial resistance, have been underfunded due to the high-risk nature of generating financially viable returns. Professor Chris Molloy, CEO, Medicines Discovery Catapult, said: “Impact investment is an ideal source of funding for medicines discovery. It is long-term, people-centred, scalable and accessible to all. This fits and fuels the patient-centred R&D engine that the Syndicates have pioneered, and is an exciting innovation in drug discovery.” “The MDC-We Share approach allows medicine discovery start-ups to devote their energies to doing what they do best: R&D. The potential for this new model is huge – across every therapeutic area - and we are delighted to be partnering with We Share for what could be a game-changing moment in UK medicines R&D.” Edward de Jager, founder of We Share Ventures and Chairman of the Board, Unknown Group, said: “Despite its many successes, the traditional model of utilising venture capital to fund projects into medicines discovery cannot cater for every area of research, especially in the early stages of their development.” “Some areas require a different model to provide them with the funding they need to produce ground-breaking research that can ultimately add great societal and economic benefits. “Our collaboration with MDC does just that and we are excited to partner with such a reputable organisation, drive innovation in medicine discovery and support early-stage medicines developers for the unmet needs of the patients.” In Autumn 2021, MDC and We Share Ventures will hold a call for applications for start-ups across Europe with preclinical-stage medicines discovery projects aiming to address patient need in cystic fibrosis-related infections, hearing loss and tinnitus and psychiatric disorders. At least two projects that demonstrate high potential to create patient impact will be selected and added to We Share’s philanthropic funding platform to secure funding and join the We Share community.