QUB spin-out Aramune raises £800,000 to scale its health product

25 May 2022

From left: Stuart Gaffikin, Stuart Gibson, Ashley Cooper, Brian Green, Oisin Lappin, Chris Nicklin. Image: Aramune

Aramune is developing a plant-derived product that could boost immunity and prevent antimicrobial resistance in animals and humans.

Belfast-based Aramune Technologies has raised £800,000 in seed equity funding to scale and trial its first plant-based health product.

A Queen’s University Belfast spin-out, Aramune is developing natural, plant-derived feed materials that can be mixed with standard animal feeds to replace antimicrobial agents and promote growth – which could benefit animal and human health.

Its product aims to boost the immune system of the host animal, increasing natural resistance to bacterial infection and minimising the occurrence of antimicrobial resistance in animals and humans.

“We are delighted to have secured this funding from local investors who are committed to supporting Queen’s spin-out ventures and the local economy,” said Aramune CEO Ashley Cooper.

“With this funding we are now well placed to rapidly exploit the very many commercial applications of our proprietary Aramune compound.”

The seed funding came from QUBIS, the commercialisation arm of Queen’s University, along with Co-Fund NI managed by Clarendon Fund Managers, the QUBIS Innovation Fund managed by Sapphire Capital Partners, and a local private investor.

The investment is expected to enable Aramune to field-cultivate its source plants, industrially scale its compound extraction procedures and undertake more commercial trials.

Last year, the start-up won £300,000 in funding from Innovate UK and was a regional winner in the InterTradeIreland Seedcorn Investor Readiness competition.

“This investment is a vote of confidence in the commercial potential of our research, and it follows on from Aramune’s recent successes,” said Brian Green, chief scientific officer of Aramune.

Stuart Gaffikin, an investment manager from Clarendon Fund Managers, added that his team is delighted to back Aramune as part of this seed round. “We look forward to playing our role in supporting the company as it develops and commercialises its natural, plant-based products for use in animal health and nutraceuticals.”

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Vish Gain is a journalist with Silicon Republic