A new report from BioCity has revealed a “baby boom” of new life science ventures, driven by unprecedented levels of investment.

The UK Life Science Start-Up Report, an in-depth analysis of emerging businesses within the life sciences across the UK, collected, analysed and interpreted data for nearly a decade and a half and found multiple factors behind driving the expansion, but of greatest impact was the emergence of a number of significant venture funds able and willing to make very large investments in early stage businesses.

The report also looked in to the prevalence of life science start-ups in the UK over the past five years and the broader landscape in which they operate to asses the quality, and by analysing the number of start-ups by region, area of scientific focus, funding, investment and university association, created a broad picture of the current health and future of the industry.

The “baby boom” was found to be thanks in part to a change in the funding landscape, expressed in a four-fold increase to £2.8 billion of investment in early-stage ventures, compared to the previous five-year period. The report documents a rise in the number of global players establishing or sponsoring accelerators and incubators and making investments through their corporate venturing arms.

Both the number of companies starting up and the amount invested in them has “taken off” explained BioCity Chairman and former chief executive officer, Dr Glenn Crocker.

He continued, “We have seen a 50% increase in the number of companies and a four-fold increase in investment going into them; this will likely result in a substantial increase in the demand for space. We estimate that this cohort of businesses alone could require 1.4 million square feet of specialist facilities over the next five years. One consequence of this demand growth is that real estate investors are being increasingly attracted to the sector.”