Kelly Martin's Malin looks to lure biotechs to Ireland as initial investment spree nears end

Having committed €73 million ($79 million) to Immunocore's huge fundraising round, Kelly Martin's Malin has now nearly doled out the first tranche of the money it raised in its IPO. And as such the focus at Malin is shifting to helping its portfolio companies to grow, a process that will entail talking up the merits of setting up shop in Ireland.

Kelly Martin

Dublin, Ireland-based Malin has been served well by its home city--in which it pulled off a €330 million IPO in March and returned for a further €42 million last week--and wants its portfolio firms to join it on the Emerald Isle. "Each company has its own specific agenda but we have been very clear regarding the merits of Ireland [as an operational location] for various reasons as we had great success here with our IPO," Malin CEO Adrian Howd told the Irish Independent. So far, Malin has cast a wide net when looking for investments, picking firms in Africa and on both sides of the Atlantic.

The pace of new investments is now set to slow, with Immunocore being the eleventh of a planned 12 companies to join Malin's portfolio. Malin raised a further €42 million last week from existing institutional shareholders to allow it to get deep into Immunocore while still keeping some money aside for other purposes. The fundraising, which came sooner than Malin planned originally, should mark the end of Malin's hunger for cash for now. "We are in great shape for funding now so [another raise] is not something we would expect to do in the short term," Howd said.

With the portfolio nearly complete--Malin may invest in one more firm by the end of the year--and fundraising pausing, the team must come good on its promise to provide more than money to the companies in which it has invested. At the time of its IPO, Malin pitched itself as a way for biotech founders who are heavy on scientific expertise and light on commercial nouse to access the skills they lack. Many of the people in place at Malin to provide advice worked with Martin during his time at the helm of Elan, which went through a topsy-turvy ride before selling up for $8.6 billion.

- read the Independent's article