Gosselies, Belgium, December 15, 2017 – Univercells SA, a technology company dedicated to delivering innovative and cost-effective biomanufacturing solutions, today announces the successful closing of a €3 million ($3.56M) capital increase in a Series-A equity financing round, led by private investors. The proceeds will support the commercial roll-out of its viral platform and the completion of its recombinant platform.
In addition to the company’s founders and Takeda Ventures Inc. – who joined them in 2015 – Univercells is pleased to welcome a dozen private investors who embraced its mission to make biologics available and affordable to all. Among them are US and EU-based executives from the equipment development and vaccines industries, together with Belgian entrepreneurs. All bring a significant professional background and are willing to mobilize their extended network to position Univercells’ innovative solutions on the global market. The investors were impressed with the potential of the innovative technology developed by Univercells, fostered by its recent achievements and thought-through development roadmap.
In the coming months, this investment will support the commercial roll-out of Univercells’ viral micro-facility, with a first technology transfer anticipated for Q4 2018 within the framework of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation-supported program. In addition, the capital will benefit the completion of Univercells’ innovative recombinant platform development, paving the way for the cost-effective production of biosimilars. Both viral and recombinant solutions developed at Univercells address the same issue: the need for a sufficient supply of high-quality biologics at an affordable price. By acting on this technology, Univercells aims to shatter existing barriers in the biomanufacturing industry to make a positive change in global access to healthcare.
“We are very proud of this funding round and thankful for this wealth of support”, commented Hugues Bultot, co-founder and CEO of Univercells. “This successful capital increase is a real recognition of the work achieved so far, the innovative technology being developed and the clear expectations and roadmap set. It is highly encouraging to have seasoned industry experts demonstrate such tremendous confidence in Univercells, its ability to transform the industry with their willingness to contribute to our mission.”
Univercells is a technology company offering novel biomanufacturing platforms, aimed at increasing the availability and affordability of biologics – recombinant proteins and vaccines – for all. Univercells designs innovative production processes to significantly decrease the size of the necessary equipment and facility, for a lower capital and operational cost.
The company’s process intensification and integration technology entails smaller footprint and unit cost while offering flexible capabilities, from small to large batches.
Deployment of affordable production units enables ‘in-country, for-country’ biologics production, creating value for manufacturers and healthcare systems with cost efficiency and local supply while increasing patients’ access to healthcare.
Univercells was founded in 2013 by experienced entrepreneurs Hugues Bultot, CEO, and José Castillo, CTO, who bring close to 25 years of expertise in the biotechnology and life sciences sectors. Headquartered in Gosselies (Belgium), Univercells benefits from support from the Walloon region and received €3 million from Takeda in 2015. Most recently, the company was awarded a $12 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.