Oxford Nanopore Technologies plc has secured a £70 million investment from bioMérieux SA, a world leader in the field of in vitro diagnostics.
Oxford Nanopore, spun out of Professor Hagan Bayley’s University of Oxford lab, has developed a real-time DNA/RNA sequencer and can assist with accurate, rapid testing in cancer and infectious disease.
The company serves thousands of customers across a wide range of scientific communities in more than 120 countries around the world.
French firm bioMérieux now owns 3.5% of its shares and expects to increase this “from time to time, subject to availability and price”.
The investment follows a partnership between the companies, announced in April, and aligns with Oxford Nanopore’s increasing focus on clinical markets.
The listed company reconfirmed its guidance to be EBITDA breakeven by the end of 2026, despite losses widening in the six months ending 30th June. Total revenues for the period fell by a third to £86m as its legacy COVID testing revenues dropped from £51.8m to zero.
However its Life Science Research Tools arm reported robust growth.
“With bioMérieux’s strategic investment and our shared commitment to innovation, we are poised to accelerate the development of nanopore-based IVD solutions,” said CEO Gordon Sanghera. “This investment will enable us to deliver rapid, accessible, and affordable clinical tools more quickly to address unmet needs and improve healthcare worldwide.”
Pierre Boulud, bioMérieux CEO, commented: “Drawing on our six decades of expertise in the in vitro diagnostic space, we consider that the new generation of sequencing technology developed by Oxford Nanopore holds promise to answer future diagnostic needs and will further improve patient care, in particular against the ever-growing infectious diseases threat.”
Oxford Nanopore floated on the London Stock Exchange in 2021 in a £3.4 billion IPO priced at 425 pence per share. Its share price at the close yesterday stood around 190p, rising to 216p by 8.30am this morning following the bioMérieux announcement and news of a multi-year joint development collaboration with Mayo Clinic.
The partnership will develop new clinical tests for diseases and improve patient care, spanning a wide breadth of applications from translational research in human genetics to detection of genetic predisposition to cancer.
The collaboration activities will take place on Mayo Clinic’s campus in Rochester, Minnesota.
“Since our IPO two years ago, we’ve delivered strong, above-market growth relative to our peers, and today we are excited to talk about our next phase and our long-term vision,” said Sanghera.
“Our blend of highly differentiated technology and unique commercial strategy has primed us to achieve our objectives in the Life Science Research Tools sector in the short-to-medium term. We are committed to ongoing delivery in this important sector.”