When Global University Venturing published its ground-breaking analysis of more than 60 years of spinouts at University of Oxford in April 2020, all the data we had collected was from a pre-pandemic world. By that point, the institution’s portfolio had collected more than £2.2bn and another $245m in equity financing overall.

Guest after guest on our Talking Tech Transfer podcast noted that the pandemic had led to an increase in activity, a reality subsequently reflected in annual reports. Having analysed Oxford’s longitudinal data just before the pandemic has given GUV a unique opportunity to evaluate how exactly these past 18 months have affected university venturing at a deep level by way of example of one of the world’s oldest and leading research institutions.

During the 2020 to 2021 fiscal year, the university’s tech transfer subsidiary Oxford University Innovation (OUI) added a record 23 spinouts, 4 startups and 6 social enterprises to its portfolio – with some crossover between these, this meant 31 new additions to OUI’s list of companies for a new total of 275 (including two that remain in stealth and details of which we are not at liberty do disclose).

Around 77.5% of companies remain active today, a slight drop on the 78.5% in our last analysis. A total of 15 companies achieved some form of exit – either an initial public offering, an acquisition or both – before being wound down, so may be reasonably counted as successes. Including these businesses, the survival rate jumps to around 82.8%, again a slight drop on the 83.9% previously.

Across the portfolio, total pre-exit equity capital now stands at more than £2.8bn, plus another $732m and €6.5m. Although it is difficult to account for currency fluctuations, at the current exchange rates this would be a total of more than £3.3bn or $4.6bn.

Notably, the median amount is only £3.3m and the average is £14.8m for the rounds in British pound sterling, which constitute the majority of transactions, or $49m and $72.3m for the rounds in US dollar amounts – of which there were only 10.

But beyond these numbers, Oxford achieved something far more remarkable during the pandemic: the technology of its spinout Vaccitech – which listed on Nasdaq in April 2021 following a $110m IPO – was the foundation for the covid vaccine in partnership with pharmaceutical firm AstraZeneca.

Alexis Dormandy, chief executive of the university’s investment company Oxford Science Enterprises (formerly known as Oxford Sciences Innovation) which had invested in Vaccitech, said: “The fact that 98% of Covax vaccines are the AstraZeneca vaccine is because it really took a university.

“The people at the university deserve huge credit for coming up with a deal with AstraZeneca to give them the technology for free, and also the people in Vaccitech who contributed to giving that for free, which then allowed non-western countries to get access to the vaccine.

“I do not think it would happen if it was not a university venturing arm, because in money versus the good, the money would win.” He added: “It is a reflection on the importance of university venturing and what it can do.”

Another covid-related company was Oxsed, a social venture that was working on a rapid test for the disease. Oxsed launched in June 2020 and only five months later was acquired by Prenetics’ DNAFit Life Sciences subsidiary.

This was not the only notable acquisition that occurred during the pre-vaccine days of the pandemic – epigenetics company Base Genomics, which had raised only $11m in equity funding, was bought by molecular diagnostics business Exact Sciences for $410m in October last year.

Matt Perkins photo (c) John Cairns
Matt Perkins (photo © John Cairns)

Matt Perkins, chief executive of OUI, wrote in the office’s annual report: “Our spinout portfolio not only continues to grow, but to rapidly mature.

“Oxford Nanopore’s £3.4bn IPO is stealing the headlines, while many continue to scale towards their own flotations. Meanwhile, Yasa Motors held a prominent exit of its own with its acquisition by Mercedes Benz.

“As these develop, the overall ecosystem is moving from the gold rush days of the Oxford Boom to a more established community of innovators looking to create a rising tide of impact that raises all boats.

“While OUI’s role in the process remains at that inflection point where research transfers into the wider world, we believe we have a part to play in sustaining the momentum of recent years and using our voice and convening power to help our community thrive.”

That listing of Oxford Nanopore was grabbing headlines for all the right reasons: it marked a phenomenal success for the university and it also became one of the largest initial public offerings of a spinout in the nearly nine years that GUV has been covering the sector.

 

Woodford proves his worth too late

There is an elephant in the room when it comes to Oxford Nanopore’s flotation: Neil Woodford and his since-collapsed Woodford Investment Management, which also managed the Woodford Patient Capital Trust (now called Schroders UK Public Private Trust).

The listing was so successful, it made commercialisation firm IP Group a whopping £84m on the spot.

Oxford Nanopore was a core holding in Woodford’s flagship Equity Income fund and it could have netted investors hundreds of millions of pounds. However, administrator Link Fund Solutions sold the shares to Acacia Research for a fraction of its IPO valuation a year ago.

The spinout was one of 18 holdings sold for a combined £224m in June 2020. Nanopore’s price was reportedly £98m. Overall, Link Fund Solutions had offered such a cutthroat price that Acacia flipped the majority of the package, some of it within hours, and immediately bagged a profit of £150m.

Nanopore was one of two companies that Acacia held on to and it is a bet that has massively paid off for the patent litigation company.

Indeed, Acacia offloaded £16.4m worth of shares as part of the initial public offering and retained a 4.4% stake worth £149m at the IPO price of £4.25 a share. At the time of writing, its stake is worth £193m.

Neil Woodford
Neil Woodford

Is this hindsight enough to claim that Woodford was right all along? The root of the firm’s collapse was an overreliance on illiquid holdings that Woodford was unable to sell on when investors wanted their money back in droves – around £10m per day. Reportedly once worth £10.2bn, the fund was worth just £3.7bn by the time it was suspended in 2019.

The drawn-out process since the collapse has meant that many investors are still waiting for their money today – Link Fund Solutions continues to wind down the fund and is unsure when exactly this will be complete.

Adding to the chaos is the fact that law firm Leigh Day launched legal proceedings against Link Fund Solutions in September 2021 claiming that Link Fund failed to carry out its regulatory duty, as authorised corporate director, to look after the best interests of investors. Crucially, that claim covers both its decision since the fund’s suspension and the run-up to that suspension.

In his first interview since the collapse, Woodford showed himself combative in February this year when he announced his ambition to launch a Jersey-based investment firm – plans that failed. Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, he apologised saying “I am very sorry for what I did wrong. What I was responsible for was two years of underperformance – I was the fund manager, the investment strategy was mine, I owned it and it delivered a period of underperformance.”

However, he stuck to his view that the fund would have been successful and declared that had investors stuck with him they could be “enjoying the fruits of that faith”.

He added: “I cannot be sorry for the things I did not do. I did not make the decision to suspend the fund, I did not make the decision to liquidate the fund. As history will now show, those decisions were incredibly damaging to investors and they were not mine.”

The example of Acacia’s win with Nanopore would agree with Woodford’s claim.

There is an argument to be made that investors may have misunderstood the “patient” part of patient capital (the firm survived only five years). It was never a get-rich-quick scheme. Tom Hockaday, former head of OUI, wrote about Woodford in his compendium on tech transfer, University Technology Transfer: What It Is and How to Do It, and in a subsequent interview with GUV revealed he maintained nothing but respect for him – admitting he had no real sense of what went wrong at the firm.

“I think what Woodford did with patient capital and what he did with supporting the opportunities that brilliant UK science presents to UK business and UK investors was really positive,” he said. “The role he played in getting [Oxford Science Enterprises (OSE)] going as one of the founding investors was really positive. I can talk about the genuine positives of what he did in promoting patient capital, but the wrangling and financial management is just not a world I know.”

Arguably, Woodford’s mistake was not investing in unquoted holdings. That is a model that Nanopore has proved works – and it is a model pursued by others, such as London Stock Exchange-listed IP Group.

Woodford’s mistake was his decision to call the firm’s lead product the Equity Income fund. It created the perception that the fund would invest conservatively in companies that typically pay dividends, but unquoted stocks do not do that.

It is impossible to know whether this was wilful dishonesty, negligence or Woodford genuinely believed he was doing right by his investors, because he so passionately believed in university research commercialisation – he was, after all, a strong supporter of IP Group and one of the people who made OSE happen. But the result remains the same – investors were exposed to a risk profile that the fund name hid from them.

Is Nanopore’s listing vindication for Woodford’s vision? Yes. It is just a shame for everyone that he went about it all the wrong way.

 

OSE’s journey has only just begun

Oxford Science Enterprises is going about it all the right way. To date, the investment firm has raised £613m and invested around £360m of that, bringing another £600m from external investors into the portfolio. OSE itself is now worth more than £1bn after its creation led to an explosion in the number of spinouts coming out of Oxford.

Steadfastly pursuing its mission of putting impact over money, OSE reinvests proceeds and as of this year even donates 2% of its shareholding from each successful company back to the originating university department. If there is anyone else out there who does this, they have not advertised it – which seems unlikely and so this almost definitely qualifies as a unique aspect.

Dormandy joined from venture capital firm Atomico in January this year, taking over from interim CEO Jim Wilkinson who returned to his original post as chief financial officer. Dormandy immediately went to work of putting his mark on the organisation and established a group looking into how well, or not, OSE was doing on diversity and inclusion.

He said: “The way I describe it is we need to be an organisation that we will be proud of in 10 years’ time, not one we could have got away with 10 years ago.”

Alexis Dormandy
Alexis Dormandy

Describing the initiative, he noted: “We did a survey internally, there were bits we were good at and others we were not so good at. We have done quite a lot of work and we still have a lot more to do, but one of the things I am most proud of is that, without trying at all and being totally meritocratic, five of my seven direct reports are women. There was no conscious effort to do that.

“As it happens, the whole of the life sciences team are women, again by accident. But clearly it is a much bigger issue than just women, we probably have further work to do on the Black, Asian and minority ethnic demographic – I would not say we are bad, we are probably market average but I am not sure that is a benchmark to aim for.”

OSE has now rolled out a survey to its 55 largest companies to get the big picture and start benchmarking. Dormandy added: “We will pay for and support initiatives to try and push that all in the right direction. So, we take it extremely seriously and, like anybody, if they say they are winning that battle they are deluding themselves. Everyone is at an early stage, but we are definitely on it and take it seriously.”

Dormandy already has a noteworthy take on fostering diversity. He continued: “The question for me is not: do I encourage [spinouts] to have diverse leadership? If I ever see a longlist of people I am interviewing and it is not diverse, I ask: what are we doing? I do not think it is so much about encouraging people, I regard it as a moral minimum and a commercial minimum.

“And as I say, the fact that we have a lot of women work in our company has nothing to do with actively trying to reach people. When we look at a list we say, does that list look like a representation of the population – if it does not, then it is the wrong list.”

OSE’s success leads to an obvious question: should there be more university venturing funds? “In general, it is a good idea,” Dormandy explained. “The biggest issue is the people. This is a professional industry and if they can be done well with good people, there is a huge opportunity there. If it is done as a slight afterthought – thinking we should be a bit more entrepreneurial, how do we spin a few things up – it is not that they will do any damage, except that it might set things back by them not working out. Better to do it well early.

“If you asked me what it would be like in five years’ time, yes, they will be spinning up in other places. And if you ask me in 10 years’ time, there will be an industry that is probably literally 20 times the size it is now.”

Dormandy is not shy about doubling down on that vision. Joking that he had never read anywhere that an American accent was needed to build a Microsoft or Intel, he added: “There are three things that need to happen. We need to have the capability to build these businesses, not just spin them out.

“We need to have billions in cash, not tens of millions, to build these industries around them. And the last bit we need is the attitude to go after it, because there is a mindset about: what does success look like?”

It will not necessarily be a software company. It may be something as unusual as Refeyn, which Dormandy highlighted as a portfolio success he was particularly proud of. Refeyn has developed mass photometry technology – essentially, it uses light to measure the weight of molecules.

“I first met them before I joined Oxford Science Enterprises – I was introduced to the founder four years ago,” Dormandy recalled. “I trained as a doctor, but when a professor who is using light to measure the weight of things is talking to you about the detail… I was definitely struggling to keep up.”

“I had absolutely no idea what the commercial model was going to be,” he admitted. “What they do is essentially the same as a mass spectrometer, but they do it for $50,000 – a fifth of the price of others.”

The technology is so transformative, Refeyn is struggling to keep up with orders and is beating every milestone they could have. But that is not the amazing part – researchers have been writing to say the throughput of their labs had gone up fivefold since installing Refeyn’s benchtop machines, because people no longer had to queue to get access to one big machine.

“The democratisation of that technology is a massively important thing,” Dormandy declared. “The reason I love it is it has very strong, unique science that nobody else has and it appeals to me that I did not see it when I first met them, which is a lesson to all of us. You need to try harder and have a bit more imagination because that is part of the job here.”

The fact that Dormandy missed the opportunity initially was emblematic of the system, he pondered: “It would not have been funded by VCs, because the work of getting that science out into a business, there is probably two years of just doing that and there was not an investible business.”

The importance of OSE therefore can hardly be overstated. If the UK is to emerge as a powerhouse for innovation following the tumultuous years of a post-Brexit, post-pandemic world still ahead of us, university venturing will be a crucial component. It is important the government understands this – not just this leadership but all subsequent ones.

a chart showing the impact of Oxford Science Enterprises on the number of spinouts from Oxford


Some notes about this data:

  • The date formed refers to the date provided by University of Oxford as the date on which the company was spun out, not when it was incorporated with Companies House. The incorporation dates are usually a few months before the completion of the spinout process, but in some cases differ by several years.
  • The total funding has been rounded. It includes the equity declared by the companies in their most recent annual accounts, by University of Oxford to GUV and press releases by the spinouts themselves. They are correct, to the best of our knowledge, as of September 2021. The figures do not include any non-dilutive grants, debt financing or bank loans. Some companies have disclosed they raised money, but not yet how much – in these cases we elected to either leave the field blank or display the confirmed funding only.
  • Defunct companies have not filed any accounts for their most recent financial year or have an active notice in place by Companies House to be struck off and thereby be dissolved.
  • PharmaDM is the only company whose status could not be ascertained, although there are no records in Belgium’s official register and its software is now distributed directly by KU Leuven. It seems safe to assume the company has been wound down.
  • Startups are companies that have gone through OUI’s incubator only, they do not include startups from the wider university community.
  • At the request of OUI, the following list does not include spinouts in stealth mode.
SpinoutFormedTypeActiveExitTechnologyFunding
OxCarbonSeptember 2021Social ventureYes Commercial carbon offset services 
OxCCUAugust 2021SpinoutYes Conversion of CO2 into sustainable aviation fuel 
Sandymount TherapeuticsAugust 2021SpinoutYes   
EndLyz TherapeuticsJuly 2021SpinoutYes Treatments for Parkinson’s disease$3.3m
Amber TherapeuticsJune 2021SpinoutYes Bioelectronic platform initially focused on treating urinary incontinence 
LiliumXMay 2021SpinoutYes Protein technology platform to facilitate scalable discovery of first-in-class bispecific biologics$125,000
OxVaxMarch 2021SpinoutYes Off-the-shelf vaccines for solid tumours 
Oxford Green InnotechMarch 2021SpinoutYes Carbon-free transformation of ammonia waste into hydrogen 
VaxineMarch 2021StartupYes Supporting medical personnel in the deployment of the covid vaccine 
Viscera TechnologiesFebruary 2021StartupYes Predictive diagnostics technology initially focused on a test for helicobacter pylori£35,000
UjjiFebruary 2021StartupYes Gamified life coaching app 
AisentiaFebruary 2021SpinoutYes Machine learning and AI to reconstruct CT angiograms using non-CT images 
HydregenFebruary 2021SpinoutYes Enzyme catalysis using hydrogen gas to recycle the NADH co-factor, reducing waste and lowering costs£120,000
Hare AnalyticsFebruary 2021SpinoutDormant Behaviour-based analytics for business-to-consumer applications£10,000
Salience LabsFebruary 2021SpinoutYes Photon-based computing; joint spinout with University of Münster 
CuracodeFebruary 2021SpinoutYes Laser-printed high-security, low cost authentication labels£30,000
Orbit RRIJanuary 2021Social ventureYes Promoting esponsible research and innovation in information and communications technology; joint company with De Montfort University 
Augmented Intelligence LabsJanuary 2021SpinoutYes Analysis and decision support systems for marketing research; first spinout out Saïd Business School 
Kleidox TherapeuticsDecember 2020SpinoutYes Working with marketing insights companies to develop their marketing products 
Skylark WorksNovember 2020Social ventureYes Social purpose-led consultancy 
Singula BioNovember 2020SpinoutYes Neoantigen-based cell therapies for patients with solid tumours 
GTT AnalyticsNovember 2020SpinoutYes International maritime logistics simulations 
Quantum DiceNovember 2020SpinoutYes Self-certified quantum random number generator 
Global CampusOctober 2020Social ventureYes Sustainable, integrated and inter-university learning opportunities 
LitHitsOctober 2020SpinoutYes Mobile app to encourage book reading 
AisteticOctober 2020SpinoutYes Tailored clothing e-commerce app using computer vision and deep learning to generate 3D models of customers 
CarnotSeptember 2020StartupYes Ultra-efficient ceramic engines£273,000
OxLODSeptember 2020Social ventureYes Bringing the tools developed for heritage to the health data management 
OxVentSeptember 2020Social ventureYes Ventilator designed to support covid patients in ICUs£203,000
OXDHAugust 2020SpinoutYes IVF and maternity health data platforms and telemedicine service 
Open ClinicalAugust 2020Social ventureYes Open source and open access innovation in healthcare knowledge 
Oxford SimcellAugust 2020SpinoutYes Biosensors for food safety testing, incorporated in the UK but focused on China 
Blue Field LabsAugust 2020SpinoutYes Expertise and knowledge regarding data privacy, ethics, data security and public policy in connection with technology use 
Global Health Research Accelerator CICJuly 2020Social ventureYes Digital platform for knowledge sharing 
PhishARJuly 2020SpinoutYes Cybersecurity technology to thwart phishing attempts 
Dark Blue TherapeuticsJuly 2020SpinoutYes Co-founded by OUI, Oxford Science Enterprises, Evotec, BMS and University of Oxford to spin out successful Lab282 oncology projects 
Base GenomicsJune 2020SpinoutYesAcquired by Exact Sciences for $410m in October 2020, now incorporated as Exact Sciences InnovationEpigenetics company advancing technology to sequence DNA methylation developed at Oxford’s Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research branch$11m
CareerSheJune 2020StartupYes Helping students aged 5 to 25 to learn about the world of work and guide them in major life decisions 
Deep EditJune 2020StartupYes Software-based photo enhancer for professional photographers 
OxsedJune 2020Social ventureYesAcquired by Prenetics’ DNAFit Life Sciences subsidiary in November 2020Focused on developing a rapid covid-19 test, joint company of University of Oxford and Oxford Suzhou Centre for Advanced Research£249,000
OxEdApril 2020SpinoutDormant Platform to standardise assessments of language, reading and arithmetic skills in children£100
BloomdApril 2020StartupYes Question and answer platform connecting elderly citizens to younger users£40,000
GaitQMarch 2020SpinoutYes Wearable device that analyses the walking gait of Parkinson’s patients£625,000
Qdot TechnologyApril 2020SpinoutYes Engineering solutions for thermal problems such as those occurring in fusion reactors 
Living OpticsJanuary 2020SpinoutYes 3D laser spectrometer and single shot hyperspectral imaging£5m
Spintex EngineeringJanuary 2020SpinoutYes Scalable manufacturing process for spinning spider silk£306,000
Ivy FarmsDecember 2019SpinoutYes Lab-grown meat£6.4m
Orca ComputingDecember 2019SpinoutYes Quantum computing technology£2.9m
Ground Truth LabsDecember 2019SpinoutYes Digital pathology annotation tool£50,000
Infinitum EducationNovember 2019StartupYes Artificial intelligence-powered, gamified teaching 
Collegia PartnersNovember 2019StartupYes Pension fund management for SMEs£246,000
Global Malaria VaccinesSeptember 2019SpinoutYes Germany-based holding company to receive EU funding on malaria vaccine development at the university 
Nucleome TherapeuticsJuly 2019SpinoutYes Drug development using the non-coding part of the human genome£5.2m
Lime BiosciencesJuly 2019SpinoutYes DNA assembly 
GyreoxJuly 2019SpinoutYes Design and rapid generation of libraries of molecules for previously undruggable targets£835,000
Machine DiscoveryMay 2019SpinoutYes Optimisation codes for several verticals, beginning with nuclear fusion processes£100,000
Cristal Health (dba Akriva Health)May 2019SpinoutYes Software for the submission, de-identification and sharing of mental health patient records£3m
Oxford IonicsApril 2019SpinoutYes Ion traps based quantum computing£180,000
MiroBioApril 2019SpinoutYes Therapeutic antibodies for treatment of inflamation of cancer£31m
Rogue InterrobangMarch 2019Social ventureDormant Strategy gaming and consultancy£100
Oxford Immune AlgorithmicsApril 2019StartupYes Portable blood monitoring device, backup app and database£5.3m
Asymmetric Suzuki ReactionsMarch 2019SpinoutYes Working with pharmaceutical and agrochemical companies to synthesise molecules£65,000
Greater ChangeMarch 2019StartupYes Fundraising for homeless people 
Oxford Brain DiagnosticsApril 2019SpinoutYes Software for differential diagnosis of cognitive diseases£2.2m
CareCompare ServicesDecember 2018StartupYes App that connects patients and families with care providers 
Oxstem BetaDecember 2018StartupNoIn liquidation as of May 2021Therapies to stimulate formation of new beta cells in the pancreas to restore functional beta cells in people with diabetes£1,500
Oxstem ImmunoDecember 2018SpinoutNoIn liquidation as of May 2021Therapies to induce tissue repair for chronic wounds and a range of inflammatory conditions£1,500
Cortex OrganicsDecember 2018SpinoutYes Scalable producton of cannabidiol£15,000
Sophia Oxford UKNovember 2018Social ventureDormant Non-profit accrediting businesses that bring their workforce out of multidimensional poverty 
MacrophoxOctober 2018SpinoutNoIn liquidation as of March 2021Cancer cell therapy company£3.3m
Ni2oOctober 2018SpinoutYes Brain implant to treat a variety of diseases 
Hello Display MaterialsSeptember 2018SpinoutYes Light-emitting diodes using perovskite technology; joint spinout with University of Cambridge£796,500
Handsup TechnologiesAugust 2018SpinoutYes AI-based learning support applications; rebranded from Edtopia in May 2021£705,000
Oxford Molecular BiosensorsAugust 2018SpinoutYes Bacterial biosensors for detection and quantification of environmental contamination 
PQShieldJuly 2018SpinoutYes Quantum computing cypersecurity£4.5m
Caristo DiagnosticsJuly 2018SpinoutYes Biomarker to detect coronary heart disease£2m
1715 LabsJuly 2018SpinoutYes Commercialising Zooniverse technology, which powers a citizen science portal£600,000
HEXRJune 2018SpinoutYes 3D-printed personalised helmets£4.4m
RefeynJune 2018SpinoutYes Single molecule mass spectrometer£4.3m
Oxford HighQJune 2018SpinoutYes Sensor technology based on optical microcavities used in scientific instruments and chemical sensors£2.1m
Oxford OlefinsMarch 2018SpinoutNoDissolved in June 2019Developing novel catalyst process and route to high value internal olefins 
SugarOxMarch 2018SpinoutYes Crop stimulant 
PepGenMarch 2018SpinoutYes Drug delivery platform technology$157.5m
Odqa Renewable Energy TechnologiesFebruary 2018SpinoutYes Geothermal technologies£775,500
Latent LogicFebruary 2018SpinoutYesAcquired by Waymo in December 2019, now incorporated as Waymo UKMachine learning technology for autonomous vehicles and traffic modeling£2.2m
DeepReason.aiJanuary 2018SpinoutYes Fast and intelligent reasoning using public or private datasets 
PalaeoPiJanuary 2018SpinoutYes Low cost three dimensional imagine of museum artifacts 
Oxford Sustainable FuelsJanuary 2018SpinoutYes Catalyst production and processes for upgrading pyrolysis oil to high octane gasoline£1m
VeriVinDecember 2017StartupYes Through-barrier Raman spectrometer to identify and classify complex liquids in sealed containers£300,000
TheolyticsDecember 2017SpinoutYes Developing libraries of synthetic oncolytic viruses, with an initial focus on myeloma£5m
BreatheOxNovember 2017SpinoutYes Development of asthma monitoring system 
Brill PowerNovember 2017SpinoutYes Electical and software controls for lithium ion battery storage£3.3m
6D.aiOctober 2017SpinoutDefunctAcquired by Niantic in March 2020, application for company dissolution filed in September 2021AR/VR platform technology for the software industry£2.2m
MOA TechnologyOctober 2017SpinoutYes Screening and discovery of herbicides£8.3m
OpsydiaSeptember 2017SpinoutYes Laser fabrication in diamond structures£1.9m
Quantum Motion TechnologiesAugust 2017SpinoutYes Silicon-based quantum computer£9.5m
AlloyedJuly 2017SpinoutYes Alloy by design; rebranded from Oxmet in October 2020£22.7m
InkPathJuly 2017SpinoutYes Career development software platform£1.1m
UfoniaJuly 2017StartupYes Smart voice assistant for healthcare 
OxtractorJuly 2017StartupYes Artificial intelligence for social media marketing 
Oxford Quantum CircuitsJune 2017SpinoutYes Super conductors for quantum computers£2m
Cycle.LandJune 2017StartupYes Bike sharing scheme£552,000
UltromicsMay 2017SpinoutYes Automated detection of cardiovascular diseases$59.1m
Scenic BiotechMarch 2017SpinoutYes Cell sequencing technology platform€6.5m
Oxford Semantic TechnologiesMarch 2017SpinoutYes Machine learning technology to run complex queries on disparate data sources£4.1m
FungryMarch 2017StartupNoDissolved in May 2019Food purchasing and delivery platform 
SpyBiotechMarch 2017SpinoutYes Platform for vaccine candidate development$39m
ProMappMarch 2017SpinoutYesAcquired by Nintex in July 2018Health outcomes£150,000
OxonomyFebruary 2017SpinoutNoDissolved in September 2020Maritime trade and transport simulation 
CovaticJanuary 2017SpinoutYes Personalisation engine built for the BBC£2.9m
SunReignDecember 2016StartupYes Marketplace for solar energy£30,000
MetaboardsDecember 2016SpinoutYes Ubiquitous wireless power and data using metamaterials£5.2m
Oxford VRDecember 2016SpinoutYes VR software to help treat phobias£14.3m
Oxstem CardioNovember 2016SpinoutNoIn liquidation as of May 2021Regenerative medicines for age-related cardiovascular diseases 
EnzbondNovember 2016SpinoutYes Software to predict enzyme function£1.7m
ProxisenseOctober 2016SpinoutYes Blade tip timing instrumentation£3.2m
Circadian TherapeuticsSeptember 2016SpinoutYes Therapeutics and diagnostics for the treatment of sleep and circadian rhythm disruption£6.4m
Iota SciencesSeptember 2016SpinoutYes Microfluidics technology£9m
Flying Fish ResearchAugust 2016StartupNoDissolved in December 2018Market research analysis 
Oxstem OcularAugust 2016SpinoutNoIn liquidation as of May 2021Regenerative medicines for age-related diseases£2.4m
Oxstem NeuroAugust 2016SpinoutNoIn liquidation as of May 2021Regenerative medicines for age-related diseases£3.6m
Osler DiagnosticsJune 2016SpinoutYes Technology to follow levels of analytes in biological liquids£69.4m
OxSightJune 2016SpinoutYes Glasses to assist the visually impaired£7.3m
SwitchThatMay 2016StartupYes Boiler monitoring app 
Oxford NanoImagingMay 2016SpinoutYes Super-resolution microscopes£26.5m
Oxstem OncologyMay 2016SpinoutNoIn liquidation as of May 2021Regenerative medicines for age-related diseases£3.6m
OxstemMay 2016SpinoutYes Regenerative medicines for age-related diseases£17.5m
Newton LabsMay 2016StartupYesDissolved in the UK in September 2018 but incorporated in the US, where it continues to operate, in March 2018Cloud-based tools for recruitment$400,000
Evox TherapeuticsApril 2016SpinoutYes Biotherapeutics for a range of severe diseases£114.7m
Argonaut TherapeuticsApril 2016SpinoutYes Precision medicine for cancer£5.2m
Omass TherapeuticsMarch 2016SpinoutYes Mass Spectrometry£42.5m
VaccitechMarch 2016SpinoutYesListed on Nasdaq in April 2021 following a $110m IPOVaccine development$216.4m
DiffblueMarch 2016SpinoutYes Software code validation£18.9m
Mind FoundryFebruary 2016SpinoutYes Big data analytics£14.8m
ZegamiJanuary 2016SpinoutYes Software, data query and visualisation tools£4m
Oxford EndovascularDecember 2015SpinoutYes Flow-diverter for the treatment of intracranial aneurysms£12m
NavenioDecember 2015SpinoutYes GPS-free navigation£20.2m
T-Cypher BioNovember 2015SpinoutYes Drug discovery platform; rebranded from Orbit Discovery in November 2020£14.1m
Bodle TechnologiesNovember 2015SpinoutYes Display technology using ultra-thin films£8.8m
SonosineOctober 2015SpinoutYes Electromagnetic acoustic imaging; rebranded from Oxford Enhanced Medical in January 2021£2m
Oxford FlowSeptember 2015SpinoutYes Pressure flow regulator£13.3m
GyanaSeptember 2015StartupYes AI-based data science software£4.9m
Xerion HealthcareAugust 2015SpinoutYes Nanoparticle-augmented radiotherapy technology£3.5m
iOx TherapeuticsJuly 2015SpinoutYes Cancer therapeutics£3.2m
Total MamaApril 2015StartupYes Healthcare service for women before, during and after pregnancy£50,400
EvershelfApril 2015StartupNoDissolved in September 2020Cataloguing software for CDs, DVDs and vinyl 
MixergyApril 2015SpinoutYes Smart water boiler£5.5m
Animal DynamicsApril 2015SpinoutYes Biology-inspired design of military drones£7.7m
UniQreateMarch 2015StartupDormant Adaptive and self-learning data extraction 
Prolific AcademicMarch 2015StartupYesSubsidiary of US-based Prolific TechnologiesParticipant recruitment for online surveys£937,500
WrapidityFebruary 2015SpinoutNoAcquired by Meltwater in February 2017 and dissolved in March 2020Web data extraction 
Weird ScienceJanuary 2015StartupYes VR/AR tools for STEM subjects 
Singular IntelligenceDecember 2014StartupYes AI-based decision automation for retail and consumer goods£237,000
BibliUDecember 2014StartupYes Online textbook platform£12m
PNLPDecember 2014StartupYes Sports insights sourced through social media 
OxboticaOctober 2014SpinoutYes Autonomous vehicle software£65.6m
DeonticsAugust 2014SpinoutYes Evidence-based clinical decisions£2.8m
QXR Research Co A2July 2014StartupDefunctOriginally known as Oxford Biochronometrics, defunct as of January 2020Digital fraud protection 
StarticlesJune 2014StartupNoDissolved in January 2016Knowledge showcasing platform 
OxSyBioApril 2014SpinoutYes Tissue engineering£11m
Designer Carbon MaterialsApril 2014SpinoutYes Nanomaterials for applications including energy harvesting and biosensors£252,000
EdspireMarch 2014StartupNoDissolved in January 2017Online learning resources search engine 
GenomicsMarch 2014SpinoutYes Genome analytics£66m
OxCeptJanuary 2014SpinoutNoDissolved in August 2017Cybersecurity£580,000
OxSonicsJanuary 2014SpinoutYes Ultrasound medical device£28.8m
Nightstar TherapeuticsJanuary 2014SpinoutYesListed on Nasdaq in October 2017 following a $75m IPO, acquired by Biogen in March 2019 for $877mGene therapy for rare, inherited diseases$95.5m
Oxford MestarDecember 2013SpinoutYes Translational and regenerative medicine£2.1m
MuOxNovember 2013SpinoutDormantAcquired by Summit Therapeutics in November 2013, licensing agreement with OUI terminated in March 2019Treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy 
Oxford BiotransSeptember 2013SpinoutYes Specialty chemistry£7m
Okurso Social TechnologiesJune 2013StartupNoDissolved in September 2015Lead generation by tapping into web and social media 
PerspectumApril 2013SpinoutYesFiled for a $75m IPO in July 2021 but withdrew in August 2021Medical imaging for liver diease£48.3m
EsplorioJanuary 2013StartupYes Travel diary app£643,000
Run3DDecember 2012SpinoutYes 3D motion analysis£480,000
BrainomixDecember 2012StartupYes Medical imaging software to analyse CT scans of stroke patients£9.7m
OxiWayNovember 2012StartupYes Recruitment software to scale the hiring process and remove unconscious bias£464,000
OnfidoOctober 2012StartupYes AI-based identity verification£152m
Oxford VacmedixSeptember 2012SpinoutYes Cancer vaccine development£9.5m
OxeHealthAugust 2012SpinoutYes Medical device to detect pulse and breathing rate remotely£29.5m
Intelligent UltrasoundJuly 2012SpinoutYesAcquired by Medaphor in September 2017 for £3.6m, Medaphor changed its name to Intelligent Ultrasound Group in January 2019Software to improve medical ultrasound imaging£2.6m
Active Inspiration Technologies (dba Fuell)July 2012StartupNoIn liquidation as of March 2020Digital health platform for employees£2.1m
ColwizMay 2012StartupYesAcquired by Taylor & Francis Group in May 2017Research management, collaboration and productivity platform£1.5m
OxgeosMarch 2012StartupYes Geo-social games, community and advertising platform 
TheySayDecember 2011StartupYesAcquired by Aptean in January 2018Deep learning platform to detect a user’s sentiment£2.3m
Oxford Cancer BiomarkersDecember 2011SpinoutYes Colorectal cancer biomarker tests£11.3m
PilioNovember 2011StartupYes Energy management software 
Oxford Imaging DetectorsOctober 2011SpinoutNoDissolved in October 2018Electronic microscopes£250,000
Oxford MultiSpectralSeptember 2011SpinoutYes Multispectral digital scanners£988,000
OxtexJuly 2011SpinoutNoDissolved in February 2021Self-inflating tissue expanders based on hydrogel£6.8m
First Light FusionJuly 2011SpinoutYes Fusion energy£44.2m
Cella EnergyJanuary 2011SpinoutNoDissolved in March 2016Hydrogen storage technology£2.7m
Oxford PVNovember 2010SpinoutYes Solar cell technology£108.4m
Ixo TherapeuticsNovember 2010SpinoutNoDissolved in April 2018Immunotherapy£150,000
Kepler EnergyOctober 2010SpinoutYes Tidal turbine energy production£250,000
OxEmsJune 2010SpinoutYesThe company filed documents as recently as July 2021, but has not updated its website since 2015 and there appears to be no discernible business activityElectromagnetic tags for underground utility network monitoring£2m
OxepiFebruary 2010SpinoutNoDissolved in September 2012Epigenetics£431,000
YasaAugust 2009SpinoutYesAcquired by Mercedes-Benz for an undisclosed amount in July 2021, concurrently spun out Evolito which will develop the technology for aerospace applicationsElectric motors and generators£49.3m
CN Bio-innovationsJuly 2009SpinoutYes Microbioreactor technology to improve drug discovery£19.9m
Oxford Financial ComputingMarch 2009SpinoutNoDissolved in February 2012Algorithms for financial apps 
OrganoxNovember 2008SpinoutYes Organ recovery for transplantation£28.4m
Maple Tree EnergyNovember 2008SpinoutYesNow incorporated as Trust Power, doing business as Loop Energy SaverSmart energy meter platform£6.9m
Oxford Emergent TB ConsortiumJuly 2008SpinoutNoDissolved in July 2015Tuberculosis vaccine developer£4m
SemmleMarch 2008SpinoutYesAcquired by GitHub in September 2019, now incorporated as GitHub Software UKSoftware engineering analytics platform£7.7m
CrysalinJune 2007SpinoutYes Crystal structure determination£4.5m
Oxford BioDynamicsJune 2007SpinoutYesListed on Aim in December 2016, raising £20m in its IPOChromosome fingerprinting£15.7m
ClinoxJune 2007SpinoutNoDissolved in August 2013Development, conducting and analysis of early-stage clinical trials in oncology 
Fuel 3D TechnologiesFebruary 2007SpinoutYes Handheld 3D scanner£34.1m
Alcolizer Technology UKNovember 2006SpinoutYes Drug testing£2.8m
CytoxOctober 2006SpinoutYes Alzheimer’s diagnostic£12.9m
Oxford Advanced SurfacesSeptember 2006SpinoutYes Advanced coatings for polymers£4.7m
AuroxJuly 2006SpinoutYes Microscopy 
Particle TherapeuticsJune 2006SpinoutYes Needle-less injection£1.6m
Oxford MedistressApril 2006SpinoutYes Stress diagnostic£2.2m
TDeltaSMarch 2006SpinoutYes Diet biochemistry£15m
VelocysDecember 2005SpinoutYesIncorporated as Oxford Catalysts Group, acquired Velocys in November 2008 and listed on AimCatalysts for gas-to-liquid and liquid hydrogen£1.5m
Celleron TherapeuticsNovember 2005SpinoutYes Cancer therapeutics£12.1m
Oxbridge Pulsar SourcesSeptember 2005SpinoutYes Secure communications£25,000
SalundaJune 2005SpinoutYes Industrial solid state sensors£9.6m
Oxford Nanopore TechnologiesMay 2005SpinoutYesListed on LSE in September 2021 following £350m IPOLab-on-a-chip£805m
EKB TechnologyDecember 2004SpinoutNoDissolved in July 2012Bioprocessing to produce and recover chemicals in a single step£375,000
Surface TherapeuticsNovember 2004SpinoutNoAcquired by Serentis in October 2007, Serentis was dissolved in December 2011Treatments for inflammatory epithelial diseases£1.5m
G-NosticsJune 2004SpinoutNoDissolved in May 2012Anti-smoking diagnostics£250,000
AvactaJune 2004SpinoutYes Breath analysis£396,000
Oxford Consultants for Social InclusionAugust 2003SpinoutYes Data analytics for socio-economic research£40,000
Riotech PharmaceuticalsJuly 2003SpinoutYes Hepatitis drug development£1.3m
ReOxMay 2003SpinoutYes Drugs controlling the activity of hypoxia inducible factor£2m
Summit TherapeuticsFebruary 2003SpinoutYesListed on Nasdaq in 2015 following $34m IPOChemical genomics£24.1m
BioAnaLabNovember 2002SpinoutNoAcquired by Millipore in January 2009, Millipore itself bought by Merck Group in 2010, before BioAnaLab was dissolved in August 2013Biopharmaceutical testing£1m
Oxford Risk Research and AnalysisNovember 2002SpinoutYes Risk analysis£470,000
Oxford ImmunotecOctober 2002SpinoutYesListed on Nasdaq in 2013 following $74m IPO, sold its US laboratory services to Quest for $170m in 2018T cell measurement technology, including a test to diagnose latent tuberculosis infection and disease£66.2m
OxitecAugust 2002SpinoutYesAcquired by Intrexon for $160m in August 2015Environmentally-friendly insect pest control£28.7m
GlycoformAugust 2002SpinoutNoDissolved in April 2012Glycosolation technology£5.8m
ZyentiaMay 2002SpinoutNoDissolved in March 2010Modification of proteins£2.9m
Oxford Biomaterials March 2002SpinoutYes Biomimetic spinning of fibres£490,000
MinervationFebruary 2002SpinoutYes Healthcare consultancy£16,000
PharminoxJanuary 2002SpinoutNoDissolved in April 2019Anti-cancer drugs£6.1m
Oxford Drug DesignDecember 2001SpinoutYes Computer-aided drug discovery£7.5m
NaturalMotionNovember 2001SpinoutYesAcquired by Zynga for $527m in February 2014Interactive character animation£19.3m
Oxford ArchdigitalJune 2001SpinoutNoDissolved in June 2009Development of archaelogical-based IT applications£150,000
NovarcApril 2001SpinoutNoDissolved in March 2006Automotive components£1.5m
Oxford AncestorsApril 2001SpinoutYes Genetic genealogy 
Oxford Bee CompanyMarch 2001SpinoutNoDissolved in September 2008Pollination£335,000
OxLocMarch 2001SpinoutNoDissolved in March 2010Tracking devices£2.8m
PharmaDMDecember 2000SpinoutUnknownAlso incorporated research from University of Aberystwyth and KU Leuven, the latter now maintains and distributes PharmaDM’s software. There are no records for PharmaDM in Belgium’s official company register.Drug design software£400,000
TolerRxDecember 2000SpinoutNoDissolved in October 2011T cell therapies for autoimmune diseases, diabetes and cancer$150m
Oxford BiosensorsAugust 2000SpinoutNoDissolved after entering administration in June 2009Biosensors£9.7m
Mirada SolutionsJune 2000SpinoutYesAcquired by CTI Molecular Imaging for $22m in 2003, in turn acquired by Siemens in 2005, before Mirada CEO led a buyout in 2008 and formed Mirada MedicalMedical imaging software£200,000 (Mirada Solutions); £10.5m (Mirada Medical)
OBS MedicalMay 2000SpinoutYes Vigilance monitoring systems£26.9m
MindWeaversApril 2000SpinoutNoDissolved in September 2014Sensory and motor training technology£935,000
SychronJanuary 2000SpinoutNoDissolved in 2005Software to develop policy-driven data centre management solutions 
ThirdPhaseJanuary 2000SpinoutYesMerged with CMED Group in 2005 and rebranded to CMED TechnologyClinical trials management£613,000
OmiaDecember 1999SpinoutNoMerged with Oxiva in 2001 to become Mirada Solutions, acquired by CTI Molecular Imaging in 2003, in turn acquired by Siemens Medical in 2005Image analysis for measuring heart motion 
AuC SensingAugust 1999SpinoutNoDissolved in November 2008Sensor development£15,000
OxonicaAugust 1999SpinoutYesListed on Aim in July 2005, raising £7.1m in its IPO, delisted in August 2009 and re-registered as a limited company in February 2011Nanotechnology for UV protection, security and biodiagnostics£5.1m
Dash TechnologiesJune 1999SpinoutNoMerged with Celoxica (then Embedded Solutions) in 2000, Dash became dormant in 2007 and was dissolved in May 2010Parallel hardware and software design£500,000
Oxxon TherapeuticsJune 1999SpinoutDormantAcquired by Oxford Biomedica in 2007 for £16m, dormant since 2008Immunotherapies for chronic infectious diseases and cancer£21m
AvidexMarch 1999SpinoutNoAcquired by Medigene for €50m in September 2006, Medigene subsequently spun out Immunocore and Adaptimmune to commercialise different aspects of Avidex in 2008. Avidex was dissolved in December 2012. Adaptimmune completed a $175m IPO in May 2015, followed by Immunocore’s $258m IPO in February 2021.T cell receptor technology£33.1m
Sense ProteomicsNovember 1998SpinoutNoAcquired by Oxford Gene Technology in 2009, in turn acquired by Symex in 2017Autoantibody biomarkers for cancer and autoimmune diseases£4.2m
CeloxicaNovember 1998SpinoutYes Ultra-low latency data access for electronic trading£28.2m
PromicJune 1998SpinoutNoAcquired by Biota for £6.4m in 2009, dissolved in October 2015Antibiotics£21.4m
SynapticaMarch 1998SpinoutNoDissolved in August 2021Neurodegenerative diseases£6m
OpsysFebruary 1998SpinoutNoAcquired by Cambridge Display Technology in 2002, in turn acquired by Sumitomo Chemical in 2007, before Opsys was dissolved in August 2013Light-emitting materials£17.4m
Synergy Pharmaceuticals1998SpinoutNoListed on Nasdaq in 2011 before being saved out of bankruptcy by Bausch Health Companies in a $195m deal in March 2019Treatments for gastrointestinal diseases 
Oxford Gene TechnologyJuly 1997SpinoutYesAcquired by Symex in 2017DNA technology 
OxagenApril 1997SpinoutYes Treatments for asthma and chronic allergic and inflammatory conditions£98.6m
Oxford BiomedicaAugust 1996SpinoutYesListed on Aim in December 1996 following an £11m IPO, before listing on LSE in 2001Gene and cell therapies for conditions with a high unmet clinical need, such as ocular and central nervous system disorders£4.5m
PowderJect PharmaceuticalsOctober 1994SpinoutNoListed on LSE in 1997, acquired by Chiron Pharmaceuticals for £542m in 2003, in turn acquired by Novartis in 2006 before Chiron was liquidated in June 2014Needle-less injection£3.7m
Oxford AsymmetryApril 1992SpinoutYesListed on LSE in 1998 before merger with Evotec in 2000 to form Evotec OAI, rebranded to Evotec (UK) in 2005Outsourcing for pharmaceutical services£5.5m
Oxford MolecularAugust 1989SpinoutNoDissolved in January 2016Chemical information management£28.8m
Oxford GlycoSciencesSeptember 1988SpinoutNoListed on LSE following a £30.8m IPO in 1998, before being acquired by Celltech for £101m in 2003, in turn acquired by UCB in 2004Biopharmaceutical research and development services£11.2m
Continuum (Entertainment)October 1986SpinoutYes Operation of historical sites 
Oxford LasersOctober 1977SpinoutYes Laser micro-machining tools and high-speed imaging systems£285,000
RMNovember 1973SpinoutYesListed on London Stock Exchange in 1994Educational IT services£4.5m
Oxford InstrumentsApril 1958SpinoutYesListed on London Stock Exchange in 1983Analytical and superconductivity instruments£153,000