Invesco Asset Management makes healthcare play with medicine investment

A £25 million fundraising for infirst HEALTHCARE will be used to launch the company's medicines into the US market.

A £25 million fundraising for infirst HEALTHCARE will be used to launch the company’s medicines into the US market.

Invesco Asset Management has led a £25 million investment round into infirst HEALTHCARE (infirst), a business which was spun out of drug discovery group SEEK.

The £25 million of new funds will be directed towards taking infirst’s medicines to what it describes as the $20 billion cough and cold, and pain consumer healthcare markets.

According to a statement, the company centres on improving the profile of safe and well-established drugs. The London-based company is led by Manfred Scheske, former president of GlaxoSmithKline’s £3 billion European Consumer Healthcare business.

Scheske, CEO of infirst, comments, ‘Cough and cold and pain are the largest and most prevalent conditions in the consumer health sector and represent an enormous opportunity for infirst to bring innovation and efficacy to a market which has seen very few new products and only marginal innovation for decades.

‘We are delighted that Invesco has become a major shareholder in our company and we look forward to delivering value for all of our shareholders in the coming years.’

More on recent healthcare investments:

Founded in 2004, drug discovery group SEEK (previously known as PepTcell) is privately-owned and funded, with headquarters in London. Using a scientific and commercially-driven approach, SEEK is aiming to create medicines which address major diseases in order to radically improve human health. 

Infirst will launch its first product, a cocoa-flavoured cough liquid, in Europe. The company is also developing a non-narcotic/non-opioid cough treatment which is in a Phase III clinical study, targeted for a 2015 market launch. The North American rights to infirst’s cough related IP have been out-licensed to NASDAQ listed US company Pernix Therapeutics.

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter Ruthven

Hunter was the Editor for from 2012 to 2014, before moving on to Caspian Media Ltd to be Editor of Real Business.

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