MedCity Update – October 2014
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From Dr Eliot Forster, Executive Chair of MedCity

Life sciences investment is the big focus for MedCity this month (and, of course, far beyond), with events and initiatives that mark the start in earnest of our engagement with the financial community on behalf of the sector.

It’s an issue that has been in the air recently. In a rare interview, the renowned fund manager Neil Woodford – a big investor in start ups and pharma – made some helpful comments about the need for investors to take a long-term view. Great news, too, from Adaptimmune, a leading UK biosciences company that recently secured a $104m funding deal – though it had to look to the USA for that investment. We want to get to a stage where the UK is viewed as a natural place for great life sciences companies to grow; this month we lay the groundwork that will get us there. 

Angels in MedCity

A new initiative to significantly increase the number of angel investors focused on life sciences is launched by MedCity this month. Based on the highly successful Angels in the City, which has created around 500 new angels since 2011, Angels in MedCity will offer a series of free workshops that bring together potential new investors and life sciences experts.

The first workshop will take place on Tuesday 4 November and more details will be available shortly at

Further information on the programme will be included in the November newsletter; if you would like to find out more in the meantime, please email us

Hume Brophy Annual Healthcare Investor Conference

Deputy Mayor of London and Advisory Board Chair Kit Malthouse continues MedCity’s investor engagement work this month with an address on Healthcare and the City: Working Together at Hume Brophy’s sixth Annual Healthcare Investor Conference on Thursday 16 October.

Bringing together CEOs and leading investors, plus a keynote speech from Life Sciences Minister George Freeman, the conference will explore how the life sciences industry can communicate its potential to generalist investors.

The conference is by invitation only – to find out more about attending, contact
See more about the conference here 

“Collaboration and a critical mass”

The competition is global, and investors see the region as a cluster rather than a series of separate institutions – Sir John Tooke, Academic Director of UCLPartners and Vice-Provost (Health) at UCL, on why London’s AHSCs set up MedCity

Read more

OneStart launch events

OneStart, the accelerator programme and business plan competition for biosciences entrepreneurs under the age of 36, is holding a series of launch events through October.
See the full list of events here

And please join us for the London launch event at MedCity on Wednesday 15 October
Read more about MedCity and OneStart here  

Nobel Prize for UCL scientist

Professor John O’Keefe, Director of the Sainsbury Wellcome Centre in Neural Circuits and Behaviour at University College London, wins the Nobel Prize for Physiology/Medicine for his work on the brain’s ‘internal GPS system’. 

Read more

Golden triangle universities dominate global rankings

The golden triangle is home to four out of the world’s top five universities, according to the recently published QS World University Rankings. Imperial and Cambridge share second place while UCL and Oxford take joint fifth.
The region’s other world-leading universities include King’s at 16, LSE at 71 and Queen Mary University of London at 98.
Read more 

Imperial’s new President takes up the reigns

Alice Gast has taken up her new role as President of Imperial, after spending eight years as President of Lehigh University – making her the first person to lead both a US and UK university.
Read more from Imperial
Read Professor Gast’s Evening Standard editorial on why universities must collaborate globally

Bioscience battles

Eliot Forster will debate the ethics and politics of drug development at this year’s Battle of Ideas weekend, organised by the Institute of Ideas. Join him and other experts for what promises to be a heated debate on Sunday 19 October.
Read more

Help bring top medical science events to London

London & Partners, the Mayor’s official promotional and business development organisation, is looking for life sciences experts to help bring major medical and life sciences conferences to London.
No time commitment is requested, and ambassadors do not have to be based in the London region. In return for helping to identify the right events and providing expert knowledge, introductions and letters of support, L&P offers a range of networking opportunities and support for ambassadors’ events.
Find out more here

Coming up

Winning business in the US bioscience sector, UKTI
UK Bioscience Forum, BIA
uesday: Big Data, OBN
Introduction to drug discovery – from idea to clinical candidate, One Nucleus

Email us to share your event

MedCity was established in April 2014 by the Mayor of London with the capital’s three Academic Health Science Centres – Imperial College Academic Health Centre, King’s Health Partners and UCL Partners.

The next edition of MedCity Update will be sent in the first week of November



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