Top UK Companies & Startups in Biotechnology

Every year, a vast number of scientific papers are published on an array of innovations in stem-cell treatments, gene editing, tissue engineering, cell therapies, precision medicine, and a lot more. Moreover, the pandemic was one of the reasons that made some of the biotech companies and the scientists behind making the impossible possible known to the world. Given the efficacy of the COVID vaccines, the speed at which today’s biotechnology advances is really shaking up the idea of what it means to invest in emerging biotechnology startups

This article lists down some of the top biotechnology companies in the UK and startups in biotechnology you need to know (more) about.

What is Biotechnology?

Before delving into the top biotechnology companies that are creating a paradigm shift in discovery, innovation, and clinical trials, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty of biotechnology, such as what biotechnology is and its role in today’s technology-driven world. 

Modern Biotechnology uses our own cells to develop and nurture new innovations or enhance existing ones by combining modern technologies and nature biotechnology inherent to humans. 

Top Biotechnology Companies And Startups In The UK

There are a vast number of companies and startups that play a significant role in biotechnology. Here are some of the most recently founded yet highly successful biotechnology companies and startups in the UK:


  • Industry: Biotechnology, Healthcare, Pharmaceutical
  • Founded: 2000
  • Founder: John Smith, Nicholas Babaian
  • Headquarters: London, United Kingdom
  • Total Equity: £21.342B

In a revolutionary mission to deliver next-generation, transformational medicines and vaccines, GlaxoSmithKline is the tenth largest pharmaceutical and biotechnology company globally. GlaxoSmithKline is known for its very recent groundbreaking malaria vaccine, RTS, S, the first malaria vaccine globally that meets the WHO’s goal with more than 75% efficacy. Along with more than 94,000 employeesGlaxoSmithKline has some of the world’s most anticipated vaccine research and development, such as HIV, cancer treatments, and more. 

Wellcome Trust

  • Industry: Biotechnology, Healthcare, Medical Research
  • Founded: 1936
  • Founder: Sir Henry Wellcome
  • Headquarters: London, United Kingdom
  • Latest Funding: £750M

Primarily established to administer the fortune of Sir Henry Wellcome, a pharmaceutical magnate and founder of one of the predecessors of GlaxoSmithKline, Wellcome Trust is a leading UK medical research charity. With its aim to protect and improve human and animal health, Wellcome trust has been on its research and development journey for more than 86 years. Wellcome trusts and co-funds a plethora of biotechnological and general medical research initiatives, such as the Cancer Genome Project, Ebola Emergency Initiative, and Seeding Drug Discovery Initiative. 

Bicycle Therapeutics

  • Industry: Biotechnology, Therapeutics
  • Founded: 2009
  • Founder: Christian Heinis, Gregory Winter
  • Headquarters: Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • Latest Funding: £260M 

Founded by Sir Greg Winter, a Nobel Prize-winning British molecular biotechnologist, Bicycle therapeutics is one of the top leading biotechnology companies in the UK. This biotechnology company is best known for its inventions and discoveries on the therapeutic use of monoclonal antibodies. Along with a vision to redefine what’s possible for people with cancer and other diseases, bicycle therapeutics is focused on developing innovative treatments for various types of cancer. This relatively new yet leading biotechnology company‘s small, chemically synthesised medicines transform how oncology can be understood and researched.


  • Industry: Biotechnology, Bioinformatics
  • Founded: 2012
  • Founder: Eugene Bragin, Matthew Hurles, Nick Lench, Philip Beales, Richard Durbin, Thomas Weaver
  • Headquarters: Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • Latest Funding: £62.6M

Congenica is one of the recent biotechnology startups that has drawn the attention of many giant biotechnology companies worldwide through its disruptive precision medicine programs and software solution for genomic analysis. As a leading digital health and biotechnology company, Congenica enables genomic medicine with the Clinical Decision Support platform for clinical use to rapidly analyse and interpret genomic data. Many top biotechnology companies in the UK and across the world have already partnered with Congenica to convert genomic data into actionable information. 


  • Industry: Biotechnology, Medical and Clinical Research
  • Founded: 2020
  • Founder: Marcel Gehrung, Rebecca Fitzgerald
  • Headquarters: Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • Latest Funding: £9.2M 

Like many modern startups from a wide range of industries, Cyted is leveraging AI and other technologies to unlock clinical insight and improve patient outcomes. With a mission to drive clinical innovations in the earlier detection of diseases, Cyted is one of the youngest biotechnology startups that pioneers the next generation of laboratory tests for earlier detection of cancer and other debilitating diseases with digital and molecular biomarkers. In short, Cyted is trying to bring a world where diseases are prevented rather than treated into being. 

What was started as a method to accelerate agriculture and food production is now transformed into an advanced technology that helps us learn and develop new ideas to create a better, healthier, preventative world. The aftermath of the pandemic created a unique opportunity for biotechnology companies and their investors to expedite several groundbreaking innovations for the betterment of humanity. Moreover, the contribution of biotechnology to this world is greatly instrumental in transforming human lives and society.