Melbourne-based life science research and development company Medical Ethics has announced a direct investment of over £3 million in Wales over the next three years, making Cardiff its new base in the northern hemisphere.
Medical Ethics develop products that alleviate pain and minimise suffering associated with wounds and surgical procedures in animals. As a UK hub for life sciences expertise, Wales will provide the company with the ideal base to progress the development of its technology for humans.
Medical Ethics chose to invest in the UK for its expertise in a number of fields required for the commercialisation of the company’s technology. This includes regulatory affairs, manufacturing and clinical studies, tax subsidies and patent box incentives.
Currently Medical Ethics engages 18 independent service providers and consultants across the UK and has plans to expand its headcount. The company will also look to use other UK consultants and service providers as it addresses future regulatory and commercialisation requirements.
Medical Ethics has worked with the Department for International Trade (DIT) for two years, receiving advice, grant application assistance and introductions to key UK stakeholders including the Wales Wound Institute in Cardiff and Cardiff University, both of which the company now collaborates with. Without DIT’s support, the company would not have been able to identify these connections and would not have chosen the UK as a location for investment.
Allan Giffard, Managing Director, Medical Ethics said:
“For us, Wales was the obvious choice in the UK, especially given our sector – Life Sciences. Wales offers the skills, expertise and infrastructure for our business to thrive.
“Through DIT, we’ve been able to participate in the Global Entrepreneur Programme, enabling us to overcome a number of initial challenges. DIT, along with Innovate UK, also supported us with introductions to key experts including the Wales Wound Institute in Cardiff – an introduction which had a significant impact on our decision to choose the UK.
“When looking to expand internationally, we initially looked at a number of countries. However, we believe it would have been a more difficult process in these territories as we did not identify programmes that provide the same level of support we’ve been offered in the UK.”
Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns said:
“This announcement is testament to the strong appetite worldwide for investing in the UK, and is a real vote of confidence in Wales’ growing stature as a hotbed of life sciences expertise.
“It also showcases the commitment of the UK Government’s globally based network of trade experts to connect international investors with the right partners for their needs.
“Companies like Medical Ethics are helping to change health dynamics on a global scale and are quickly discovering that Wales is the go-to place to develop, manufacture and commercialise their innovations. The UK Government knows this and we have every intention of nurturing this industry for continued success in Wales and across the UK for years to come.”
Graham Stuart, Minister for Investment, Department for International Trade said:
“With a world-class network of universities, clinicians and industry professionals, Wales has a proven capacity in providing the expertise required by both domestic and international life science companies.
“It is now at the forefront of numerous pioneering developments across a wide variety of fields, from microbiology to pharmaceuticals. Medical Ethics’ investment in Wales is an affirmative nod to this and, as an international economic department, DIT is thrilled to have provided support.”
In the year 2016-17, DIT reported 85 investment projects in Wales, generating 2,581 jobs. Welsh companies exported more than £16.4bn of goods in 2017. The UK is the number one destination for health and life sciences Foreign Direct Investment in Europe.