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Corporate Venturing and Early-Stage Financing in the Spotlight at BioTrinity

OXFORD, England, April 25, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --

The rise of the corporate venture fund and the landscape for early-stage venture capital investing are emerging key themes at BioTrinity, the-premier European biopartnering and investment conference organised by OBN, the not-for-profit business network which provides comprehensive support for bioscience businesses in the Oxford and South-East England biocluster and beyond.

The first day of the conference saw senior figures from Merck Research Ventures Fund, Abbott Biotech Ventures, SR One, Shire Strategic Investment and Atlas Venture discuss the goals and priorities for corporate venture funds in a panel The Redefined Aims of the New Corporate Venture Universe.

Corporate Venture Panel chair, Bruce Booth, Partner, Atlas Venture, said: "Today's panel reflected the increasing role corporate venturing is playing as part of the overall investment landscape for innovative life science companies. While the models of individual funds might differ, it is clear that working with corporate venture creates opportunities for investors and companies that might otherwise not exist and provides a critical additional source of capital and expertise."

A second panel on day two of the conference brings together further leading players in the corporate venture world to discuss whether early-stage corporate VC investing represents a paradox or a paradigm shift. Panel participants include SR One, MedImmune Ventures, Merck-Serono Ventures and Boehringer-Ingelheim Venture Fund.

The opportunities and challenges in early-stage investing theme were also drawn out in a first day panel Beyond the Seed and A Rounds. Leading venture capital investors including Crédit Agricole Private Equity, Abingworth, NeoMed, Edmond de Rothschild Investment Partners and Astellas Venture Management joined the panel.

Early-Stage Venture Panel chair, Graziano Seghezzi, Partner, Sofinnova Partners, said: "There is no doubt that early-stage financing has been a challenge for companies, and for investors, in the sector in recent years and one without a simple, easy fix. What the panels at BioTrinity offer is the opportunity for companies to fully understand the current thinking of many of the leading venture capitalists operating in this space and so to best position themselves as an investment proposition."

The crucial question of whether there will be more or less early stage investment in 2012 is the subject of a second panel bringing together Sofinnova Partners, Apposite Capital, SV Life Sciences, Forbion Capital Partners, and Index Ventures.

Andy Smith Director of Investor and Public Relations of OBN, said: "Access to finance is one of the most pressing priorities for the majority of biotechnology companies and this year's BioTrinity provides vital insight into current trends and thinking of the investors they need to attract. The recent announcements on funding for life science R&D in the UK represent a positive change in sentiment to the sector and companies active at the earliest stage."

Other panels on day one at BioTrinity focused on trends in pharma M&A, and value-based pricing, with a high profile panel including Sir Andrew Dillon, CEO of NICE. Day two panels will cover trends in pharma licensing, ways of balancing revenue generation with R&D and spin outs.

About OBN

OBN is a not-for-profit business network which provides comprehensive support for its member biotech and medtech companies in the Oxford and South-East England biocluster and the rest of the UK. Our activities can be summarised as networking, partnering, group purchasing, and fundraising advice. Through its delivery of Europe's fastest growing biopartnering and investment conference, BioTrinity, OBN generates more R&D-company-to-investor interactions than anyone else in Europe. OBN is sponsored by Shire, as Corporate Patron, and Corporate Sponsors MEPC, Manches LLP, James Cowper, George James, Interea International, SRG, FOCUS Insurance, World Courier and Citigate Dewe Rogerson as well as by its extensive membership of R&D companies and other companies across the entire life sciences industry ecosystem. OBN counts more than 200 companies amongst its membership, which is growing over 40% per year.-

For further information on OBN and its activities, please visit:

Jon Rees, CEO
Tel: +44(0)845-5049722

Citigate Dewe Rogerson
Chris Gardner/Nina Enegren        
T: +44(0)20-7638-9571 /

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