Calculus invests in Scottish biotech star Synpromics

Calculus Capital has invested a total of £3.5m in Scottish biotechnology company Synpromics, as part of a £5.2m fundraising round alongside the Scottish government’s economic development agency, Scottish Enterprise and a group of private investors.

Edinburgh-based Synpromics is a developer of synthetic gene promoters. These are a vital component in the research and development of gene-based medical treatments and therapies – some of the most exciting and important areas of modern medical research and treatment.

Calculus has previously invested in Synpromics, which has helped the company to expand its team from seven to more than 20 people (over 90% of whom are PhDs), win a number of significant contracts, grow its revenues substantially and receive further grant funding.

Since Calculus Capital’s initial investment, the company has entered into several high-profile research collaborations, including on a project to develop biosynthetic gene promoters with U.S. life sciences giant GE Healthcare.

John Glencross, Chief Executive of Calculus Capital, said: “We are pleased to be supporting Synpromic’s latest round of fundraising. Since our initial investment in 2015, its performance as a business has been outstanding, with many positive developments, both commercially and in its research, which are putting it on the radar of the major players in life sciences both in Europe and the US.

The majority of the funds will be used to further develop and exemplify Synpromics’ proprietary PromPT™ synthetic promoter design platform, which enables precise control of gene function in many areas of gene medicine; including gene therapy, cell therapy and gene editing.

David Venables, Chief Executive of Synpromics, said: “This is a very exciting time for Synpromics. 2017 has got off to a great start, beginning in January when we announced a research collaboration with GE Healthcare, which itself followed a series of important commercial milestones for us.

“The new investment from Calculus Capital, and Scottish Enterprise, puts further momentum behind our current growth trajectory. Calculus’s extensive experience of investing in the biotechnology and life sciences companies, and its network of contacts in those sectors, will continue to be an extremely valuable additional asset to our business.”