Deals of the Week Oct 17 to Oct 21 – a Growth Business round-up

Deals this week include an environmentally friendly rocket, animal fat created in bioreactors and a start-up looking to fuel planes with agricultural waste

Lift off for Orbex as it raises £40m

Rocket firm Orbex has secured £40.4m in Series C funding, led by the Scottish National Investment Bank. Jacobs, The Danish Green Future Fund, Verve Ventures and angel investors participated alongside existing investors BGF, Heartcore Capital, High-Tech Gründerfonds and Octopus Ventures.

Orbex recently revealed its Prime rocket, the first orbital rocket to be powered by a renewable biofuel, which will transport small satellites into low Earth orbit.

The rocket will launch from the Space Hub Sutherland spaceport on Scotland’s north coast, which is expected to be the UK´s first operational – and the world’s first carbon-neutral – spaceport.

Biotech Nucleome Therapeutics finds £37.5m

Nucleome Therapeutics, a biotech uncovering ways to treat disease, has raised £37.5m in Series A funding. M Ventures led the round, alongside Johnson & Johnson Innovation-JJDC, Pfizer Ventures and Oxford Science Enterprises. British Patient Capital also invested via Future Fund: Breakthrough.

Oxford-based Nucleome is decoding what it calls the “dark genome” of human DNA, which it says holds more than 90 per cent of disease-linked genetic variants, to uncover novel insights and develop better and safer medications.  

Hoxton Farms raises £19.6m to manufacture fat  

A start-up growing real animal fat, without the animals, has raised $22m (£19.6m) in Series A funding. Collaborative Fund and Fine Structure Ventures led the round, with Systemiq Capital, AgFunder, MCJ Collective, and previous investors Founders Fund, BACKED VC, Presight Capital, CPT Capital, and Sustainable Food Ventures also participating.  

London-based Hoxton Farms is cultivating real animal fat to make plant-based meat alternatives more realistic. The start-up cultivates the fat in bioreactors before its customers combine it with plant-based protein to create meat alternatives.  

Cybersecurity provider fighting human error locks in £8.7m 

A cybersecurity provider identifying risky employee behaviour has been backed €10m (£8.7m) in seed funding. AlbionVC led the round, with participation from TriplePoint Capital, Forward Partners, Gapminder and Innovate UK.  

OutThink says 91 per cent of data breaches are down to human error. The platform identifies the departments with the highest risk of human error within an organisation, highlighting security weak spots like an employee forgetting to lock a computer, so companies can set up preventative measures.  

Mercia fuels cleantech with £5.25m  

Nova Pangaea Technologies, a Teesside-based business looking to fuel planes with agricultural waste, has raised £5.25m in a funding round led by Mercia, Par Equity and NPIF – Mercia Equity Finance, with participation from private investors. 

Nova Pangaea converts agricultural residues into products that are used to manufacture sustainable aviation fuel and a range of biochemicals. The process also produces biochar which is useful for carbon dioxide removal and soil enhancement.   

Vitamin drip start-up makes a splash with £3.74m  

Letchworth-based Get A Drip, a provider of vitamin drips and booster shots, has announced a $4.5m (£3.74m) Series A fundraise led by angel investor and former chairman of Saracens Rugby Club, Nigel Wray.  

Get A Drip’s vitamin drips and injections bypass the stomach, meaning a higher dose of nutrients, minerals and vitamins are made immediately available to the body to use, eliminating the need to take daily supplements.  

Speech therapy platform Noala says hello to £3.5m  

Noala, a platform aiming to make speech and language therapy for children more accessible, has raised $4m (£3.5m) in seed funding. The round was led by LocalGlobe with participation from Cocoa Ventures and angels.  

Noala offers families and schools access to support, advice and personalised practical exercises. Every week, families can view coaching videos and a set of digital exercises such as flash cards, keywords and colouring sheets before reviewing progress.  

A good investment on paper? 

Printt, a printing platform which offers businesses and individuals the ability to print A4 documents without having to own a printer, has raised over £1m.  

Printt connects those needing to print with those who have the facilities, allowing users to print A4 pages in colour or black and white, single or double-sided, and bind and laminate documents as required. Customers can then choose to pick up their documents from a local print shop or have them delivered.  

Future’s bright for solar-powered surveillance start-up 

Sunstone Systems, a start-up offering surveillance systems powered by solar energy for remote places like oil and mining sites, has raised £1m in equity funding.  

The Kent-based tech start-up has developed a solar-powered CCTV system capable of working in extreme heat environments and a sustainable generator for off-grid power.  

More Deals of the Week  

Deals of the Week Oct 10 to Oct 14 – a Growth Business round-up 

Deals of the Week October 3 to October 7 – a Growth Business round-up 

Deals of the Week Sept 26 to Sept 30 – a Growth Business round-up

Dom Walbanke

Dom Walbanke

Dom is a feature writer for Growth Business and Small Business, focused on matters concerning start-ups and scale-ups. He has also been published in the Independent, FourFourTwo magazine and various lifestyle...

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