Administrators for Biotica have trawled 96 companies worldwide to find buyers for the remains of the company. The result is £500k for creditors of the firm which went into administration earlier this year after running out of money.
The administrators, McTear Williams & Wood in Cambridge say the assets sold include physical bacterial strains as well as plant and machinery and patents. Biotica, based at Granta Park, was set up in 1996 to develop drugs for serious diseases. Global buyers for the assets include companies in the US, Sweden and one in the UK.
"The sales should ensure that the important work previously carried out by Biotica should continue and the sale in the UK should result in the new owners continuing the science." Chris McKay of MWW said. He added: "The challenge with biotech companies is understanding what it is that you have to sell and maintaining the team that can deliver the tech transfer. You have to be realistic about valuation as there is nearly always more investment required to commercialise the product."
Although Cambridge is doing well in the current economic climate, he said, the challanges it faces are different: "In Cambridge the focus is on research and development, which requires several funding rounds. At each round the investors ask themselves is the research likely to deliver and if it isn't, the funding can stop pretty fast. This is a key risk that directors of such companies must consider because once the next round of funding starts to look unlikely their options narrow very quickly."
27 March 2013