Trevor Mundel, the Gates Foundation's recently appointed head of global health, told news provider Financial Times (FT) he hoped to oversee a series of investments in companies each likely to be worth several million dollars.

The $37bn Gates Foundation, the world’s largest philanthropic organisation, reportedly plans to take equity stakes in up to a dozen biotech companies this year in a quasi-corporate venturing model, following moves by peers including Wellcome Trust and Novo.

Trevor Mundel, the Gates Foundation’s recently appointed head of global health, told news provider Financial Times (FT) he hoped to oversee a series of investments in companies each likely to be worth several million dollars.

The Gates Foundation gives out about $1.5bn a year in grants to academics, non-profit groups and companies working on global health and last year made a $10m investment in Liquidia, a US-based company which has developed the print technology for precision moulding of nano- and micro-particles that could help produce a range of more affordable vaccines and drugs.

The equity stakes will be accompanied by a non-executive directorship or observer status would give the organisation influence over…

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