Oxford Nanopore mulls London IPO later this year

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Oxford Nanopore Technologies Ltd announced it has started the process of preparing for a potential initial public offer (IPO).

It aims to complete the IPO on the London Stock Exchange in the second half of 2021.

READ: SourceBio teams up with Oxford Nanopore to provide “total solutions approach” to coronavirus testing

The biotech company sets out to enable “the analysis of anything by anyone, anywhere”.

Founded in 2005 as a spin-out from the University of Oxford, the firm has developed a new generation of technology that allows real-time analysis of DNA or RNA.

It has built an in-house and licensed portfolio of over 1,350 patents and applications and it serves thousands of customers in more than 100 countries around the world.

It has also supported users around the world to sequence the virus that causes COVID-19: around a fifth (170,000) of the SARS-CoV-2 virus genomes in the global database GISAID were generated on one of Oxford Nanopore’s devices.

Last year the Oxford-based firm also developed its own diagnostic test for COVID-19 and scaled up its manufacturing facility. The LamPORE COVID-19 diagnostic test is in use by the NHS.

“We believe that an IPO is the start of the next phase of our journey,” said chief executive Gordon Sanghera in a release.

“Gaining access to deeper, international pools of capital would support our ambitious growth plans, enhancing our ability to innovate and scale our manufacturing and commercial functions. It would, we believe, provide us with the resources and flexibility to fulfil our long-term potential.”

IP Group (LON:IPO) currently holds a direct undiluted beneficial stake of 15% in Oxford Nanopore, which it said was valued at just over £340mln.

“A successful float by Oxford Nanopore – the third unicorn with a $1-billion-plus valuation to emerge from IP Group’s investments, after Ceres Power and Hinge Health – would be a huge affirmation of the company’s business model,” said analysts at AJ Bell. 

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