Edinburgh-based Archangels leads investment of £6.2m in Scots early-stage firms in Q1

Edinburgh-based business angel investment syndicate Archangels – believed to be the largest organisation of its kind in the world – has led investment of £6.2 million in Scottish early-stage companies in the first quarter of 2020.

Wednesday, 8th April 2020, 5:00 pm
Joint MD Niki McKenzie says Archangels is willing to offer further support. Picture: Graeme Hunter Pictures.

Four tech and life sciences businesses – Blackford Analysis; Fios Genomics; Optoscribe; and Speech Graphics – were the recipients of the additional investment. A total of £2.6m came from Archangels members, with £1m from the Scottish Investment Bank, and the remaining £2.6m from a range of other investors. All four firms are existing Archangels portfolio members.

Joint MD Niki McKenzie said: “Each of these businesses is a shining example of home-grown Scottish innovation that is succeeding on a worldwide stage. We are both proud and willing to offer our continued support to these businesses as they scale up.

“These are difficult and uncertain times for all of our portfolio companies, but we remain confident that businesses like these – led by change-makers and entrepreneurs – will play an important role in driving the Scottish economy forward when the time comes.

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“Archangels remains committed to supporting Scottish businesses and I would encourage any early stage companies in the technology and life sciences space to come and share their ideas and aspirations with us.”

Blackford Analysis was spun out of the University of Edinburgh in 2010 and is a provider of a single radiology artificial intelligence (AI) platform enabling healthcare providers to quickly access and manage medical image analysis applications and AI algorithms that add clinical value.

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Fios Genomics helps pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology organisations and academia make sense of big data for drug research and development. It provides bioinformatic and statistical data analysis services.

Optoscribe was formed in 2010 as a spin-out from the School of Engineering and Physical Sciences at Heriot-Watt University, focused on innovation in the optical communications market.

Speech Graphics’ software produces facial animation from audio alone, with no need for motion capture – and its entertainment industry clients include Warner Brothers and Def Jam Recordings.

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