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Cambridge Innovation Capital (CIC)

Finance and Risk Capital

Impact for scaleups


UK companies backed


Follow-on investments


Investments outside London


Growth stage investments

Key sectors

Engineering / Advanced Engineering Healthcare Life Sciences & Biotech

Cambridge Innovation Capital (CIC) backs world-leading life sciences and technology companies with an affiliation to Cambridge. It was founded in 2013 by the University of Cambridge to create a trusted local firm that would provide early stage capital to promising life sciences and technology businesses emerging from the university – for which it is a preferred investor – and the Cambridge ecosystem. It is an exemplar of how universities and financiers can collaborate to support their scaleup communities.

CIC currently manages over £500m and has invested in 31 companies. In the period from January 2016 to July 2023, CIC has supported 67 fundraisings of which 36 (54%) were follow-on investments. Eight in ten (84%) were growth stage investments at the time of fundraising. 

Nearly eight in ten (77%) of CIC’s investments are outside of London. CIC invests in disruptive, deep-tech businesses in sectors including, but not limited to, artificial intelligence, internet of things, quantum technologies, autonomous systems, therapeutics, medtech/diagnostics, digital health and genomics/proteomics.

Notable scaleups that CIC has supported include CMR Surgical, Congenica, PragmatIC Semiconductor and Microbiotica.

CIC has worked closely with stakeholders in the ecosystem – such as the Babraham Research Campus, endorsed by the ScaleUp Institute – to establish new accelerators, such as Start Codon (founded in 2019) for life sciences and healthcare businesses which aims to speed up the process of going from “bench to product” and offers investment, mentoring and access to research infrastructure including laboratory space. CIC has also helped to establish, and co-owns, the Deeptech Labs accelerator for technology businesses, providing hands-on support to bridge the gap between translational research and ‘Series A’ ready businesses. In September 2022 Cambridge Innovation Capital, Cambridge Enterprise and the University of Cambridge launched Innovate Cambridge, an initiative aiming to define an inclusive, ambitious, and broad-ranging innovation vision for the Greater Cambridge region.

Its team brings to its portfolio companies deep domain and operational expertise from its past experiences as entrepreneurs, scientists, operators and investors. The team takes a hands-on approach including board participation, business planning and development, executive recruitment, commercialisation and scaleup.

Cambridge Innovation Capital (CIC) website