Life sciences deal rolls in ahead of key dinner

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SCOTLAND’S life sciences sector has chalked up another investment ahead of one of the key dates in the industry’s 

Software and consultancy firm Formedix, which writes programs to help put drugs through clinical trials, is to create more than 20 jobs in Glasgow over the next two years after securing a £200,000 regional selective assistance (RSA) grant from Scottish Enterprise.

Formedix, which also has an office in the United States, was founded in 2000 and works with some of the world’s largest pharmaceutical firms and medical device developers.

News of the latest deal comes ahead of Thursday’s annual life sciences dinner and awards, hosted by Scottish Enterprise in Edinburgh. The keynote speaker will be Professor Anne Glover, chief scientific adviser to the European Commission and formerly the chief scientific adviser for Scotland.

The dinner – and its networking opportunities – is one of the biggest dates in the industry’s calendar and regularly attracts more than 700 guests.

Scottish Enterprise chief executive Lena Wilson will reveal on Thursday that nearly a third of the Scottish Investment Bank’s deals in 2012 involved life sciences companies, with £4.4 million pumped into the sector. In total, businesses in the sector have attracted £10.6m of equity funding during the past 12 months.

“Scottish life sciences companies are continuing to secure new investment, which is vital if we want to build momentum within the sector and see transformational growth happen,” Wilson will say.

“We need more specialist investors for Scottish companies. That’s why the announcement by Rock Spring Ventures (RSV) is such a coup for Scotland’s life sciences industry and will be critical for its growth.”

RSV, which is run by veteran investor Sinclair Dunlop, announced last month that it is raising a £50m life sciences fund, half of which will be invested in firms in Scotland.