NVM leads investment in Newcells Biotech

Founded in 2015 and headquartered at the world-renowned International Centre for Life in Newcastle (an incubator space for young and established biotechnology companies) Newcells is a successful, early-stage, life-sciences spinout from Newcastle University, which is leading the way in the development of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (hiPSCs) for efficacy and toxicity testing in the drug development sector.

The investment will be used to support expansion of the team and the development of new assays (test cells) replicating human organs or cells for the purposes of drug and cosmetic product development.

Tim Levett and Aaron Lawson-Clark led the investment for NVM and Tim joined the Newcells board at completion. The investment in Newcells represents NVM’s fifthgrowth capital investment of 2018.

Newcells Biotech connected with NVM at the Entrepreneurs of the North 2017 event, organised by the Innovation SuperNetwork. The event offered an opportunity for North East companies to pitch to potential investors in London.

Tim LevettChairman of NVM Private Equity, said“We have been impressed with the progress Newcells has made with Northstar Ventures and are delighted to be supporting such a high-calibre scientific team that have built an outstanding reputation in its field.  We believe the business represents a first class platform for growth in an attractive and expanding niche of the healthcare sector, and NVM are looking forward to working with Newcells and Northstar to drive the business forward, whilst building an exciting next generation drug discovery process.”

Dr Mike Nicholds, CEO of Newcells Biotech, said:“We are delighted at the successful conclusion of the investment, which will enable us to increase our development capacity and accelerate the commercialisation of our unique cell-based assays for drug safety and efficacy testing. NVM and our existing investor Northstar Ventures understand what it takes to build high-growth technology businesses and we look forward to continuing our strong relationship with their team.”

Alex Buchan Investment Director from Northstar Ventures, said, We are delighted to continue to support Newcells into its next phase of growth and to join NVM in this investment round. We have been involved in Newcells since its inception in 2015 and since then it has made tremendous progress in a cutting edge area of biology, providing new and powerful tools for Pharma and Biotech. This kind of innovation and scalability is exactly what we look to invest The North East (ERDF) Innovation Fund in.”

Newcells were provided with legal advice from Anthony Evans and Stuart Grieve at Muckle LLP and Watson Burton LLP advised NVM.



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Download photos of: Newcells Biotech and the team – www.nvm.co.uk/PRphotos 

NVM was provided with:

  • Legal advice by Watson Burton (Duncan Reid & Eleanor James )
  • Financial due diligence by UNW (Neville Bearpark)
  • Commercial diligence by Alacrita (Anthony Walker)
  • Management due diligence by SimonJParker

NVM Private Equity is independently owned with over 30 years’ experience of investing in unquoted UK businesses. NVM is a generalist investor, managing more than £350 million of funds, and is differentiated by having executives living and working in regional business communities throughout the UK. NVM seeks investment opportunities of between £2 million and £12 million in UK businesses which have the right mix of growth potential and market vision. They may be looking to grow organically, acquire another business or secure a management buy-out. www.nvm.co.uk 

Newcells Biotech is at the forefront of the production and differentiation of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), advancing pre-clinical science in both drug discovery and toxicology. The company’s technology and expertise were founded at one of the UK’s leading centres for stem cell biology and located alongside one of the largest research-intensive medical university and hospital complexes in the UK. www.newcellsbiotech.co.uk