Amberside Scientific EIS
The new Amberside Scientific EIS Fund is a joint venture between Amberside Capital Ltd and Anglo Scientific Ltd, investing in the next generation of technology-focussed companies. The partnership fuses Anglo Scientific’s deep technical knowledge and expertise with Amberside’s “institutional rigour” as the fund manager.
- Invests in disruptive scientific innovations with global potential
- Particular focus on healthcare, security and communications
- Anglo Scientific set up and run the investee companies themselves initially before finding an appropriate executive team
- Investors might expect four to six holdings in the portfolio (not guaranteed), or select which companies they wish to hold
- The majority of portfolio companies are expected to qualify as “knowledge intensive”
- Minimum investment £25,000
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The fund is a joint venture between Amberside Capital Ltd and Anglo Scientific Ltd.
With any tech investment opportunity, you need a scientific expert to understand what – and how good – the opportunity really is. That is what Anglo Scientific will do, with Amberside providing the institutional rigour, due diligence and fund management expertise.
Anglo Scientific commercialises scientific research. It gets involved at the earliest stages of company development, typically co-founding a business together with lead scientists, academics and institutions, and often taking an executive role as CEO or CFO, before building up the firm to pursue global market entry and growth.
Many EIS funds offer support and mentoring to investee companies, but the Anglo Scientific team goes one stage further: it actually sets up and develops the companies.
The team has worked together for over ten years, most recently via the Anglo Scientific EIS in partnership with Innvotec. The combined valuation of the companies the team has built exceeds £200 million – note past performance is not a guide to the future.
The team has forged relationships with many leading universities and academic institutions. As well as sourcing scientific ideas and technological approaches from these educational establishments, Anglo Scientific is often contacted by scientists who want to start to commercialise their work.
Amberside Capital was founded by David Lomas, previously a director at Barclays Private Equity, and David Scrivens, a successful entrepreneur in financial services.
Watch a video interview with Douglas Dundonald and David Scrivens:
Companies sought by the Amberside Scientific EIS Fund will possess world-class technology capable of addressing a global market. If successful (and there are no guarantees it will be) the company should have the capacity to deliver over £100 million annually in revenues. It should be rich in defensible intellectual property and be EIS qualifying.
Example industry sectors include medical technology, microelectronics, security and communications. The majority of portfolio companies are expected to qualify as “knowledge intensive” under new HMRC rules.
Somewhat unusually, Anglo Scientific sets up, and runs, the investee companies. The Anglo Scientific team will also personally invest.
Investors can choose which investee companies to hold, or can have Amberside Capital invest on their behalf.
Previous Anglo Scientific portfolio examples
Radio Physics Solutions Ltd
Radio Physics Solutions Ltd was originally founded by Anglo Scientific in 2008. The company is chaired by Anglo Scientific director, Douglas Dundonald.
The Radio Physics technology provides concealed threat detection. It uses a network of camera-like sensors to identify individuals in a crowd carrying concealed weapons or explosive devices, using Artificial Intelligence and safe Radio Spectrum Technology.
The firm originally secured IP from Manchester Metropolitan University and the Home Office to develop a system to detect threats such as bombs and guns under people’s clothes.
The innovative patented systems can be integrated into security robots or used to extend the “security perimeters” of buildings, airports, schools and military outposts. The surveillance is designed to generate threat alerts well before a conventional security check. It has the potential to pre-empt attacks such as shooters in schools, suicide bombers, and other criminal or terrorist activity.
Radio Physics Solutions is an example of an investment the Amberside Scientific fund might consider for new investment.
As with all EIS, not all investments will work out, and Anglo Scientific has had its share of failures. One example was MMIC Solutions. MMIC provided a component used in early threat detection technology. However, it owned only a component of the solution rather than a complete solution, which was the key reason for the failure, according to Douglas Dundonald. The ashes of the MMIC business later became Radio Physics Solutions.
Dysphagia (difficulty in swallowing) affects millions of people, including 29% to 55% of stroke patients. The condition also affects the elderly and patients undergoing post mechanical ventilation in intensive care units (ICU).
Dysphagia has a significant impact on a patient’s health (3x higher mortality risk), quality of life, and cost of care.
Phagenesis developed a medical device that uses Pharyngeal Electrical Stimulation (PES) to create neuro-sensory input which “kick starts” a functional reorganisation of the swallowing control centres in the brain. There was no clinically proven treatment prior to this.
The Phagenesis treatment is based on over 20 years of ground-breaking research by Professor Hamdy of Manchester University. Anglo Scientific was introduced to the company in 2009.
In 2016 Nestlé Health Science entered into a staged, milestone-based acquisition of Phagenesis.
Note past performance is not a guide to the future. This is an example of a previous Anglo Scientific investment and will not be held by the Amberside fund.
Risks – important
This, like all investments available through Wealth Club, is only for experienced investors happy to make their own investment decisions without advice.
EIS investments are high-risk so should only form part of a balanced portfolio and you should not invest money you cannot afford to lose. They also tend to be illiquid and hard to sell and value. Before you invest, please carefully read the Risks and Commitments and the offer documents to ensure you fully understand the risks.
Tax rules can change and benefits depend on circumstances.
This EIS fund invests in early-stage businesses which are more likely to fail than larger ones, so you should expect a number of failures in the portfolio.
Fees and charges
A summary of the fees and charges is shown below. Please see the provider's documents for more details.
|Initial charge paid by investee company||up to 6.5%|
More detail on the charges
Anglo Scientific’s partnership with Amberside Capital could be a well matched one with benefits on both sides. It gives Amberside the deep tech knowledge it needs to invest in scientific startups, and should free up Anglo Scientific to do what it does best: starting and running innovative scientific companies. We like the fact you can choose which investee companies to hold, if you wish. Finally, the investments are likely to make a positive difference to society, whether it be medical breakthroughs or increasing the detection of terrorist threats.
Read important documents and apply
Wealth Club aims to make it easier for experienced investors to find information on – and apply for – tax-efficient investments. You should base your investment decision on the provider's documents and ensure you have read and fully understand them before investing. This review is a marketing communication. It is not advice or a personal or research recommendation to buy the investment mentioned. It does not satisfy legal requirements promoting investment research independence and is thus not subject to prohibitions on dealing ahead of its dissemination.
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