UCL Business - History


UCL's first technology-transfer company was founded in 1989 as UCL Ventures. In February 2001 UCL Ventures, together with the technology-transfer companies of the University of Bristol, the University of Southampton and Imperial College London, signed a deal with a £100 million investment fund. UCL Ventures merged with the technology-transfer company of the Royal Free Hospital, Freemedic plc (founded in 1993) to form UCL Biomedica PLC.

UCL Business PLC was created in August 2006 through the merger of UCL BioMedica with UCL’s internal knowledge transfer department, also known as UCL Business. The former UCL Business had been established to provide a link between UCL's academics and industry, and to aid the development of commercially valuable technologies arising from UCL, whilst UCL BioMedica had been established to commercialise opportunities arising from UCL’s biomedical research strengths, as well as to conduct clinical trials. The integration of the two technology transfer activities created a single organisation focused on delivering the complete commercialisation process from patent registration and support for the creation of new businesses, through to licensing and sales of technologies to industry partners.

UCLB provided advice and a grant support to Siavash Mahdavi in helping him to establish the robotics company Complex Matters. In September 2007 UCLB and UCL were sued for unlimited damages by Geoffrey Goldspink in respect of patents for mechano growth factor. UCLB has been providing regulatory support to a team of researchers from UCL that in August 2009 won a £500,000 grant towards the development of a synthetic artery that mimics a natural artery.

In January 2011, BioVex, a cancer vaccines company spun-out of UCL in 1999, was sold to Amgen for $1 billion.

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