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£10.5m investment in life sciences

Published: 21 Oct 2017 00:01

Biospyder and Acadian seek new opportunities in Scotland.

Economy Secretary, Keith Brown, has announced the planned creation of 43 new jobs by Glasgow-based BioClavis as part of a £10.5 million investment supported by Scottish Enterprise.

Bioclavis is a new spin-out from Californian molecular profiling company Biospyder, to be based at the Clinical Innovation Zone at Glasgow’s Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, creating 43 new jobs.

BioSpyder’s investment has been supported by a £4.5m Seek & Solve research and development grant from Scottish Enterprise. It forms part of a total investment of £10.5m, which will see BioClavis adapt BioSpyder’s TempO-Seq platform technology into a novel diagnostic tool for precision medicine in a number of high value clinical indications, in close collaboration with the health service and university researchers.

It comes during the Economy Secretary’s visit to the US and Canada, where he is promoting Scotland to the North American business community.

Mr Brown said:

“This is an exciting time for life sciences businesses in Scotland. The sector is strong and continuing to grow - providing employment for over 37,000 people.

“This Government has worked hard to enhance Scotland’s growing reputation as a global centre of excellence for clinical research.

“Today’s announcement is evidence of this and I’m delighted that Biospyder has chosen to base its new spinout, Bioclavis, in Scotland, where it will take forward a new project in precision medicine with our health service and universities.”

Joel McComb, CEO of BioSpyder and BioClavis said: “We’re very excited to build on the success we’ve had in other molecular profiling applications and bring this novel method to bear on discovery and deployment of next generation genomic diagnostics.

“We determined Glasgow, Scotland to be the ideal location for this initiative based in large part on the support and close working relationships with ScottishEnterprise, NHS and the University.”

Earlier in the week the Economy Secretary met with another life sciences inward investor Acadian Seaplants, which recently acquired Uist Asco, a seaweed business on the Isle of North Uist.

Mr Brown added:

“The recent acquisition of Uist Asco by Acadian Seaplants shows that investment from North American companies is having an impact the length and breadth of the country. Acadian Seaplants is a world-leader in the processing of seaweed-based products and it’s great to see them bringing their skills, knowledge and expertise to Scotland.”

Nova Scotia’s Acadian Seaplants is a global, bio-tech company and the largest independent manufacturer of marine plant products of its type in the world.  Uist Asco provides Acadian Seaplants a greater presence in Europe, complementing their operation in Kilkieran, Ireland.

At the time of the acquisition the company’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Jean-Paul Deveau said:

“I would like to acknowledge the achievements of Raghnall Maclain, who, with the support of his family, has brought Uist Asco to this stage of development. We are very much looking forward to continuing this time-honoured tradition by sharing our technologies, expertise and making the investments necessary to address any challenges to ensure the local seaweed industry prospers.”

Welcoming these significant investments Paul Lewis, Managing Director of Scottish Development International said:

“Scotland continues to be a leading location for foreign direct investment and these two latest  investments reflect our expertise in the life sciences sector, the skills of our people and the quality of our business environment. We look forward to working with BioSpyder, BioClavis and Arcadian Seaplants as they become the newest members of Scotland’s growing inward investment community.”