Downing FOUR VCT invests £1.14 million in ADC Biotechnology Ltd

  • Investment from Downing FOUR VCT (Healthcare and General share classes) advised by BioScience Managers Limited
  • Funds used to progress development of Antibody Drug Conjugate (ADCs) technology
  • Downing FOUR VCT is targeting dividends of at least 4% p.a. (of net assets) from the fourth year onwards *

London, UK, 24 April 2018 – London-based investment management firm, Downing LLP, and BioScience Managers Limited, the international healthcare investment firm and advisers to the Downing FOUR VCT, today announce the completion of a new £1.14 million investment in Wales-based ADC Biotechnology Ltd.

ADC Biotechnology is creating innovative new technology, which aims to speed up, simplify and significantly lower the costs of the processes involved in the production of new antibody drug conjugates (ADCs). ADCs are antibodies that are attached to cancer-killing drugs using chemical ‘linkers’, allowing for targeted treatment of cancerous tissue.

The investment provided by Downing will be used by ADC Biotechnology to continue the development of its ‘Lock-Release’ product** and facilitate the company’s expansion to the US with quality control labs, equipment and the creation of new manufacturing infrastructure.

Jeremy Curnock Cook, Managing Director at BioScience Managers, commented: “The healthcare industry is growing globally, funded by an ageing population in Western countries and increasing affluence in emerging markets such as China and India. ADC Biotechnology is ideally positioned to serve customers operating in these markets by applying its proprietary expertise to develop the next generation of cancer therapeutics.

Richard Lewis, Investment Director, Downing said: “VCTs can be an ideal way for investors to access small specialist companies. They provide a portfolio of companies that can yield strong returns. Importantly, VCTs can facilitate the development of technologies to a point where they are recognised by the major players, therefore providing the opportunity for both consolidation and exit.

* Please note, this is a target only and is not guaranteed.

** More about ADC Biotech’s ‘Lock-Release’ technology
The use of ADCs is an exciting and fast-growing new approach in the oncology sector but they can also be complex, costly and sometimes unreliable. A major challenge in creating ADCs are ‘aggregation events’, which can lead to activity loss in the antibody, decrease in solubility – and therefore effectiveness – of the ADC and increase the chances of provoking an immune response against the medicine during treatment.

ADC Biotechnology is developing ‘Lock-Release’ technology, a low-cost solution that counters aggregation events by speeding up the process of creating the ADC and reducing wastage. Using Lock-Release, the ADC antibody is ‘locked’ to the surface of a bead preventing aggregation from occurring during subsequent conjugation, purification and storage steps. The antibody can then be released from the bead when required during treatment using a simple additive.

– Ends –

Media Contacts

Downing LLP
Pamela Morris
the lang cat
+44 (0)131 202 6037
pamela@langcatfinancial.comJean Birrell, Downing LLP
+44 (0)7799 555353

Follow us on twitter @downingllp

BioScience Managers
Sue Charles, Ashley Tapp
Instinctif Partners
+44 (0)20 7457 2020
BioScienceManagers@instinctif.comVictoria Durrans, BioScience Managers
Phone: +61 (3) 9618 8248

Notes to Editor

About the Downing and BioScience Managers partnership
Downing LLP, the London-based investment management firm, has partnered with BioScience Managers, the international healthcare investment firm, to manage the Downing FOUR Venture Capital Trust (VCT) – Healthcare Share Class, a £20 million fund which was launched in December 2016. This partnership brings together Downing’s expertise as a generalist VCT manager, together with BioScience Managers’ specialist expertise in healthcare investment. The combined investment strategy targets dividends of 4% p.a. (of net assets) from the fourth year onwards*, while seeking to minimise losses through careful selection of small specialist companies operating in key focus areas of the healthcare sector including those working in therapeutics, medical devices, diagnostics and digital health.

About Downing LLP
Downing LLP is an FCA authorised and regulated investment manager with over 30 years of experience and has raised funds from 35,000 investors. We help UK businesses grow by investing in them via our wide range of tax-efficient products. We are proud to have raised over £1.7 billion to invest into businesses across a range of sectors, from energy, care homes, health clubs, pubs, and children’s nurseries to app-technology and e-commerce. We currently have approximately £1 billion of funds under management.

Find out more about us online at

About BioScience Managers
BioScience Managers is an international healthcare investment firm that finances and enables innovative science and technology with the potential to transform healthcare. Investments are made in both private and public companies, where its vision and strategic support enables it to deliver impressive investment returns. BioScience Managers operates from offices in Australia and the UK and from bases that span three regions – Europe, North America and the Asia Pacific, from where it sources investment opportunities. It is part of the PhillipCapital Group, which has more than US $28 billion under management and whose network of offices in 16 countries around the world provides access to valuable local knowledge and business contacts.

Find out more online at