Gentronix planning expansion after £700k investment
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Gentronix, the Alderley Park-based contract research organisation (CRO) that is a leader in the field of genetic toxicology, has raised £700,000 in a funding round led by existing investor Mercia to support its continued growth.
Gentronix provides toxicology testing services for pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals, cosmetics, personal care and consumer products.
The latest round, which includes a number of private investors, follows Gentronix’s recent acquisition of the Big Blue transgenic mutation assay from Merck KGaA. It will be used to fund the onboarding and delivery of the new service and expand the company’s genetic, skin and ocular toxicology services.
Gentronix provides companies developing new chemical or pharmaceutical products with toxicology tests required by regulators to show that they are safe to use. It currently employs more than 40 staff at its Cheshire base, including a team of expert toxicologists and serves clients including top five pharmaceutical, chemical and agrochemical organisations.
The Big Blue assay is one of only three tests in the world used for the final assessment of potential mutagenicity – the risk that a substance could cause genetic mutations that could be damaging to human health and the environment.
Access to contract research services for this type of assay is growing in importance, as there is an increased regulatory focus on the assessment of impurities for genotoxic potential within pharmaceutical space and the relevance such entities have to human health. The Big Blue assay is a key tool in determining the risk associated with such material.
With the successful onboarding of the assay and establishment of laboratory proficiency, Gentronix intends to deliver increased market capacity for these critical studies.
Gentronix has increased its revenues by 15% in each of the previous two years. The acquisition, together with its plans to develop new service lines and increase capacity in its core offerings, puts the company on course to double its revenues and create 20 jobs within the next two years.
Matt Tate, Gentronix managing director, said: “This further investment provides a fantastic platform for Gentronix to commercialise the Big Blue technology, building on our strong reputation for high quality contract research and establishing our business as a world leading CRO in the delivery of mutagenicity safety assessments.
“The Big Blue service is incredibly important for the continued development of safer chemicals and medicines, and we are excited to strengthen our collaborations with clients across the pharmaceutical and chemical industries by providing this. In addition, our expanded capabilities in skin and ocular toxicology services will drive business growth in new markets, allowing us to build on the growth we’ve achieved during the pandemic and creating more high quality jobs at our facilities in Alderley Park.”
Mercia was investing via its Northern Venture Capital Trusts (VCTs), which first backed Gentronix in 2007.
Alex Gwyther, of Mercia, said: “Gentronix’s work is crucial in helping to develop new pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals and consumer products that are safe for people and the environment.
“We are confident Matt and the team will go from strength to strength as they continue to serve their global clients with both their core offerings and the newly acquired Big Blue assay. We are excited to support the company in the next stage of its growth story.”