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Posted 17 October 2008

UCD spin-out Celtic Catalysts secures €500,000 investment

Celtic Catalysts, the NovaUCD-based life sciences company, has secured €500,000 funding from existing investor, 4th Level Ventures and other private investors. This brings the total secured investment for the company to over €2.5 million from 4th Level Ventures, Enterprise Ireland, Údarás na Gaeltachta and Business Expansion Scheme investors.

The company, co-founded in 2000 by Professor Declan Gilheany and Dr Brian Kelly as a spin-out from the UCD School of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, has successfully carved a strong niche for itself in the specialised area of ‘P-chiral’ technology which enables global pharmaceutical companies manufacture drugs, particularly those in anti-viral and anti-cancer therapeutic areas, more cost effectively.

Pictured far right (l-r): Professor Declan Gilheany, Chief Scientific Adviser and co-founder, Celtic Cataysts with Brian Elliott, Chairman, Celtic Catalysts and Dr. Brian Kelly, co-founder and CEO Celtic Cataysts.

“This latest investment will assist Celtic Catalysts in closing some very exciting near-term opportunities,” said Dr Brian Kelly, CEO, Celtic Catalysts. “Due to further projected growth, the company will seek to raise additional capital to enable it to develop scale-up production facilities to manufacture bulk quantities of its products and to address additional high-value opportunities.”

Earlier this year, Celtic Catalysts was presented with the NovaUCD 2008 Innovation Award in recognition of its successful commercialisation of chiral synthesis research which took place over many years at UCD. In addition it was the international winner of the ‘Rising Star Award’ at the BioIndustry Association (Scotland) Thistle Bioscience Forum 2008.

“Celtic Catalysts continues to perform to plan and this investment allows the company to achieve another critical milestone,” said Ray Naughton, co-founder, 4th Level Ventures.

Along with product sales, Celtic Catalysts has already signed several research alliance agreements with a number of multinational pharmaceutical companies. These research alliance agreements enable Celtic Catalysts to apply its expertise and technology to solve problems encountered by pharmaceutical and biotech companies in the manufacture of their drugs.

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UCD spin-out Celtic Catalysts secures €500,000 investment