30 April 2012

UniQuest, based at The University of Queensland’s St Lucia campus, has congratulated NanopatchTM vaccine technology developer Vaxxas Pty Ltd and its investors on winning the prestigious 2012 Best Venture Capital Investment prize.

The award was announced at the Vaccine Industry Excellence (ViE) Awards at the World Vaccine Congress in Washington DC, USA, on April 11.

The ViE Awards honour the efforts, accomplishments, and positive contributions of companies and individuals in the vaccine industry.

UniQuest Managing Director David Henderson said the award added to the stellar list of achievements for the emerging University of Queensland vaccine development start-up company.

“We congratulate the Vaxxas team on such a high-profile acknowledgement from the global vaccine industry,” Mr Henderson said.

“Vaxxas was only launched last August, following the AU$15 million investment from a syndicate of Australian and international venture capital funds.

"The investment was one of Australia’s largest first round start-up investments, the first investment for OneVentures, Brandon Capital and the MRCF in Queensland, and the first investment for Healthcare Ventures in Australia.”

UniQuest supported the Nanopatch technology’s commercialisation with patent protection and marketing, leading to negotiations with the investment syndicate.

“Recognition at this stage along a project’s commercialisation pathway highlights the value Australian university-based innovations are contributing to global health care,” Mr Henderson said.

Vaxxas and its investment syndicate, led by One Ventures, with co-investors Healthcare Ventures, Medical Research Commercialisation Fund (MRCF) and Brandon Capital Partners, scored 40 per cent of the votes from the international vaccine community as well as the judging panel’s ultimate endorsement.

The criteria met by the Vaxxas nomination to win the award included the innovative and unique aspects of the deal structure; the calibre of the parties involved and their respective responsibilities; the size of the investee’s target market(s); the potential to address strongly an unmet clinical need; and the impact the investors have made on the ability to advance clinical and economic objectives.

Media enquiries:
Leanne Wyvill +61 7 3365 4037, +61 409 767 199 or l.wyvill@uniquest.com.au

For more information: http://www.uniquest.com.au/news/big-deal-nano-biotech-company http://www.uniquest.com.au/news/university-research-scoops-innovation-awards http://www.uniquest.com.au/portfolio/vaxxas-pty-ltd-nanopatch http://vimeo.com/channels/uqnewstv#27522315 www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyTl-KIhi8Y http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0TG12MXLrI&feature=youtu.be

About UniQuest Pty Limited www.uniquest.com.au.
Established by The University of Queensland in 1984, UniQuest is widely recognised as one of Australia’s largest and most successful university commercialisation groups, benchmarking in the top tier of technology transfer worldwide. From an intellectual property portfolio of 1,500+ patents it has created over 70 companies, and since 2000 UniQuest and its start-ups have raised more than million to take university technologies to market. Annual sales of products using UQ technology and licensed by UniQuest are running at billion.

UniQuest now commercialises innovations developed at The University of Queensland and its commercialisation partner institutions: the University of Wollongong, University of Technology Sydney, James Cook University, University of Tasmania, Mater Medical Research Institute, and Queensland Health. UniQuest also provides access to an expansive and exclusive network of independent academics to tailor a consulting or project R&D solution to meet the diverse needs of industry and government, facilitating some 500 consulting, expert opinion, testing, and contract research services each year. UniQuest is also a leading Australasian provider of international development assistance recognised for excellence in technical leadership, management and research. Working with agencies such as AusAID, NZAID, the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank, UniQuest has developed and implemented more than 400 projects with 60+ countries throughout the Pacific, South-East Asia, the Indian sub-continent and Africa.

About Vaxxas Pty Ltd
Vaxxas is developing a new medical device for vaccine delivery using a game-changing micro needle technology (NanopatchTM) developed at The University of Queensland. The Nanopatch targets the key intradermal site for vaccine delivery; generates a better immune response than traditional needle and syringe; is pain-free (no needles); and may avoid the need for adjuvants and the refrigeration of vaccines. The technology is targeting a multi-billion market and is already receiving strong interest from big pharmaceutical companies for use with their vaccines.