Record levels of private equity funding for Scotland’s flourishing life sciences industry highlight its growing appeal to investors, the public-private sector partnership driving its development said yesterday.
Life Sciences Scotland (LSS) said companies north of the border had raised £85 million of equity investment during the past year, not including any fundrasing through stock market flotations.
The latest total – boosted by a “surge” in international venture capital support – is a 27% rise from the £67m private equity investment secured in the previous 12 months.
LSS said the Scottish Investment Bank – the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise – was also providing vital support to life sciences and chemicals firms, investing nearly £8m and leveraging funding worth nearly £104m during 2017-18 alone.
Private equity investment is helping to make life sciences a “major force” in Scottish research and development, it added.
LSS industry leadership group co-chairman Dave Tudor said: “Securing equity investment is a crucial part of growing a life sciences business.
“Few companies will be able to fuel all their ambitions for growth through their own cashflow or bank lending. Bringing on board external investors can be key to their expansion plans.
“Such investment not only allows companies to extend their production and manufacturing capabilities, but also stokes their research and development work.”
An estimated 400,000 people are now employed within life sciences in Scotland.