Cash is floating into Biotech like never before, in the US as well as in Europe. And Woodford just announced he invested over 75% of the total money he raised, so over €800M. Let’s have a look at where the money went into.Neil Woodford in his office, Image from woodfordfunds.com
Neil Woodford is a legendary British Biotech investor who opened a new mega €1.1Bn Biotech fund, named Woodford Patient Capital Trust, last April 2015. It is the biggest UK trust ever, outpassing the previous record of €750M (£549M) hold by Mercury European Privatisation.
Woodford didn’t wait to deploy the money, with already a lot of small and large investments within the 4 months after opening.
We covered several news here, as for example his investments in the Stem-cell therapy Biotech ReNeuron, in Oxford Sciences Innovation with Google Ventures, in PsiOxus, and of course in Immunocore’s monster €293M round (the second biggest worldwide after Moderna!!).
Woodford also made other investments:
- 4D Pharma, Vernalis, Xeros, Circassia, Imperial Innovations, (all UK-based),
- Later-stage and publicly listed companies such as GSK and AstraZeneca,
- Prothena, Northwest Biotherapeutic, and Alkermes, (all US-based companies).
With his last investments, Woodford has shown that he shares the high enthusiasm of the US-based investors for new cancer therapies even if, in his own opinion, “this has led to several US biotech stocks trading on bubble-like valuations” and his investments being considered as “significantly undervalued by the market”.
Overall, the situation is already good as “the company’s net asset value has moved forward modestly“. The good results being brought by early-stage Biotech companies whereas GlaxoSmithKline and AstraZeneca have shown short-term share price weakness. Woodford is also “very excited by the long-term potential that [his portfolio companies] collectively represent” and “very positive about the portfolio’s ability to deliver outsized long-term returns to investors”.
In short, a lot of optimism, which leads Neil Woodford to plan the issue of new shares over the next year to raise an extra £80 million (€112m) and to continue empowering the momentum over Biotech companies in Europe.