The next case study from our Oxfordshire Innovation Engine 2023 is here. In this study, we have been looking at billion-pound investment company, Oxford Science Enterprises.
Oxford Science Enterprises (OSE) launched in 2015 to build world-changing businesses based on academic discoveries in life sciences, deep tech and health tech made at the University of Oxford.
It was originally called OSI (where the ‘I’ stood for ‘Innovation’) but changed its name in 2021 to more strongly reflect its role as an independent investment company that helps to found, fund and build new enterprises.
OSE was founded by executives of the investment business, IP Group, which was originally set up in Oxford in 2000 before moving to London and floating on the London Stock Exchange. The aim of OSE was to tackle what the founders, and fellow investors, considered to be an imbalance between the funding and support available to spin outs from the top universities in the United States compared to Oxford.
OSE’s Chief Financial Officer, Jim Wilkinson, believes the problem the company was set up to address speaks for itself when you compare the fact that Oxford can point to only four, billion-pound companies (or ‘unicorns’) founded on its science, compared to the 200 from Silicon Valley’s Stanford and 50 from MIT in Boston. He claims that Oxford, as a world leader in research, clearly had untapped potential, which OSE was set up to release.
Read the full case study here.