Ahren Innovation Capital (“Ahren”) is looking for a Summer Associate to join its investment team for 6-8 weeks over summer 2021 (start date flexible).
Ahren is a $250M investment institution that supports cutting edge, highly commercial companies at the intersection of deep technology and deep science from Seed through to Series E.
Ahren was founded in 2018 by Alice Newcombe-Ellis, and has offices in London and Cambridge, UK. In a unique model, the firm was set up in conjunction with nine world-leading, commercial scientists from the University of Cambridge whose technologies are today valued in excess of $100BN combined.
Ahren’s broad fields of activity include the brain and artificial intelligence, genetics & platform technologies, space & robotics, and efficient energy. Whatever the domain, Ahren believes in taking asymmetric, considered risk that will deliver superior rewards – capturing a generational opportunity to provide smart capital to deep technology.
Please note, this will be a remote position.
- Work directly with the investment team to source, evaluate and diligence tech deal flow
- Support investment diligence, including engaging with cutting edge tech start-ups
- Preparing briefing documents for investment committee meetings
- Using your deep scientific knowledge to conduct a pro-active research project into a tech investment domain of mutual interest to identify the most promising investment opportunities in the space.
The ideal candidate would have:
- Completing / completed PhD or post-doctoral research position in a relevant field. Applicants with a background in computer science are strongly encouraged
- An entrepreneurial, self-starting attitude
- Demonstrable interest in early stage investing and technology commercialisation
- Curiosity regarding cutting edge science and technology
- Team player, with ability to think creatively and work independently
- Excellent communication skills
- 2+ years prior commercial experience
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with a one page CV and cover letter. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis.
Ahren’s Founding and Science Partners include:
- Alice Newcombe-Ellis, Founding & Managing Partner, formerly an investor at TPG Capital and Lansdowne Partners, Double First-Class degree in Mathematics and Master’s in Maths & Physics from the University of Cambridge; Fulbright and Baker Scholar at Harvard Business School.
- Sir Shankar Balasubramanian, principal inventor of the leading next generation human genome sequencing technology core to all Illumina sequencing platforms estimated to be worth >$30BN.
- Professor Roberto Cipolla, Professor of Information Engineering at Cambridge University, Director of Toshiba Research Europe.
- Professor John Daugman, Professor of Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition at Cambridge University, inventor of IRIS (eye) recognition technology used to register 1.5BN citizens worldwide.
- Professor Zoubin Ghahramani, world leader in machine learning, co-founder of Geometric Intelligence (sold to Uber), Uber Chief Sicentist and VP for AI until 2020. Now part of the Google Brain leadership team.
- Professor Steve Jackson, Founder/co-founder of three companies and originator of Olaparib/Lynparza, recently partnered by AstraZeneca with Merck and valued as an asset at up to $17BN.
- Professor Andy Parker, CERN leader, Head of the Cavendish Laboratory (Physics Department) of Cambridge University.
- Sir Venki Ramakrishnan, Nobel prize laureate and President of the Royal Society, the UK’s premier science body.
- Lord Martin Rees, World-renowned astrophysicist, Astronomer Royal, founder of CSER, former President of the Royal Society and former Master of Trinity College, Cambridge University.
- Sir Gregory Winter, 2018 Nobel laureate, inventor of technology leading to Humira ($19BN sales in 2019, the world’s greatest grossing drug) and founder of three companies. Former Master of Trinity College, Cambridge University.
Ahren’s Portfolio Companies, past and present, include:
- 6D.ai, has developed a set of computer vision development tools that allow developers to build real-time 3D reconstructions of the world on device using only a simple, “RGB” monocular camera, the type of camera on a typical iPhone. 6D.ai was acquired by Niantic, Inc. augmented reality mobile game developer and maker of Ingress, Pokémon Go, and Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, in March 2020 and represents Ahren’s first exit.
- Adrestia Therapeutics, has developed a platform focused on applying the latest technical advances to identify therapeutics for rare diseases. It is the latest venture of our Science Partner, Steve Jackson (who invented Olaparib/Lynparza, the breast and ovarian cancer drug partnered between AstraZeneca and Merck, valued as an asset at $17BN).
- Bicycle Therapeutics, is a biotherapeutics company commercializing a new class of therapeutics and drug delivery mechanisms known as bicycles®. This is a platform technology that has applications both within and beyond and shows great promise. This company was co-founded by Ahren Science Partner Sir Greg Winter (who invented Humira the world’s highest grossing drug with ~$20BN revenues in 2018.) Bicycle Therapeutics was listed on the Nasdaq in Q2 2019, our first IPO, raising $60m at a valuation of c.$200m.
- Cambridge Epigenetix (“CEGX”), is a pioneer in the development of epigenetic technologies and aims to change the way medicine is practiced by reducing several routine and important diagnostic screening tests to a simple blood draw using the 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (“5hmC”) epigenetic modification as a diagnostic biomarker. The field of epigenetics was created when colleagues of Ahren’s Science Partner, Sir Shankar Balasubramanian, showed that changes in organisms can be caused by the modification of gene expression.
- Graphcore, is a hardware systems company developing an Intelligence Processor Unit (“IPU”) to accelerate machine learning (“ML”). Graphcore’s IPU is delivering a new approach to processing data, chip design and associated software by facilitating both training and inference on the chip with the use of mathematical graphs. Graphcore’s Colossus GC2 processing chip integrates 23.6 billion transistors into a single silicon die in a unique architecture, representing a world record to date.
- Mogrify, has developed an algorithm to determine the transcription factors required to turn one cell type into another cell type without transition through a stem cell state. This is revolutionary. Direct conversion via an algorithmic method (as opposed to 5-7 years of trial and error, which is the other route that has been pursued), is swifter, more efficient and avoids the moral hazard of using stem cells. Mogrify was the brainchild of Professor Julian Gough, a Stanford Computer Science graduate and PhD of University of Cambridge’s renowned Lab of Molecular Biology (from which 27 Nobel laureates have arisen, including Ahren Science Partners Sir Gregory Winter and Sir Venki Ramakrishnan)
- NuQuantum, has a vision to develop end-to-end quantum cryptography systems, securing communications within and between cities through urban and satellite free-space optical links. At its core, the solution that NuQuantum is developing relies on a fundamental property of physics known as quantum entanglement. The Company is generating a portfolio of patented single-photon components that are critical to the creation of commercially viable photonic quantum technologies, using semiconductor technology and novel materials.
- Rockley Photonics, is a fabless (i.e. outsourced manufacturing process) developer and supplier of silicon photonics chipsets. Its core technology platform is application specific, and can be used to manufacture silicon photonics components cheaply and at scale without the need for hermicity. The versatile platform is currently being developed for application in three use-cases that each have potential or positive societal impact: Communication (Opto-ASIC and transceivers), 3D Sensing and Imaging (LIDAR) and Custom Sensors (Broadband Spectrometer for Consumer Health).
- Zapata, provides quantum algorithms and software services to enable real-world applications across the full range of quantum and classical computing devices. Customers use Zapata’s algorithms to solve some of their most complex problems, such as maximizing the yield of chemical reactions or determining the most cost-efficient route for delivery vehicles. Zapata’s Orquestra® workflow tool enables users to configure the software code and hardware devices to run quantum algorithms.