WideCells Group


AGM Statement and Notice of Investor Evening

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WideCells Group PLC ('WideCells Group' or 'the Group')

AGM Statement and Notice of Investor Evening

WideCells Group PLC, the healthcare services company focused on providing stem cell services and ground-breaking insurance for stem cell treatment, will hold its Annual General Meeting ('AGM') today.  After the AGM João Andrade, Chief Executive Officer, will provide a corporate update, highlighting the progress made since listing in all three divisions.  A new corporate presentation, which will be used by Mr Andrade to present with, can be found on the Company’s website later today: www.widecellsgroup.com.  Furthermore, the Company will be hosting a private Investor Evening on Wednesday 12 July 2017, further details of which are set out below.

At the AGM Mr Andrade will make the following statement:

“It is nearly a year since we first floated WideCells Group on the London Stock Exchange in July 2016.  Since this time, we have made astronomical progress in building a revenue generative end-to-end stem cell support services company. Testament to this is the recognition we received from DISRUPT 100, an annual index celebrating the businesses with the most potential to influence, change or create new global markets, where WideCells Group was ranked as the 21st most disruptive company globally.  This award is a great honour and I believe gives an indication of the huge impact our business is set to make on the medical world. 

“The business currently has three primary divisions, being CellPlan Limited (‘CellPlan’), WideCells Group Science (‘WideCells’) and WideAcademy, with four potential revenue streams.   With revenues now being received and set to increase from WideCells, from both storage and research, and the launch of our core stem cell insurance product in June 2017 creating a third, we have reached an inflection point as we enter a new and significant period of growth. 

“Taking a look first at CellPlan, we founded this division having recognised a significant flaw in the stem cell industry; whilst more than 3 million people around the globe have paid c.£2,000 to store stem cells, many do not realise that the cost of treatment can be up to £300,000.  Our innovative first-of-its-kind CellPlan product removes these financial barriers; for an affordable £150-£300 per annum, CellPlan provides stem cell healthcare coverage up to €1,000,000 and crucially provides families with access to expert second medical opinions and first-class treatment, with no geographical barriers. 

“Whilst we have long held great confidence in the quality of our CellPlan product, the “proof of the pudding” arguably lies in uptake and sales.  I am therefore delighted to report that we have had an overwhelming response from cord blood storage facilities wanting to offer CellPlan to their customers.  We have managed to secure a highly strategic sales agreement with Biovault Technical Ltd ('Biovault'), the UK's largest private human tissue storage facility, and we have a number of additional agreements with global storage facilities in our pipeline.  CellPlan is due to be available for purchase by all Biovault customers imminently, which currently includes more than 25,000 cord blood stored samples.  Furthermore, following commercial launch, all new customers of Biovault will automatically be signed up to CellPlan for an initial period of 12 months.

“Complementary to our CellPlan offering is our stem cell storage and processing division WideCells Group Science (‘WideCells’).  Whilst we work with a number of independent cord blood storage facilities, we are delighted to have our own storage and processing capabilities, which in turn enables us to penetrate a global market which was valued at US$2.4 billion in 2015 and is growing rapidly; 3 million cord blood samples are currently held in storage in 500 facilities across the world and this is increasing by 250,000 a year. 

“In 2016, we secured a licensing agreement with an established stem cell storage and processing facility in São Paulo, Brazil, which has been in operation since 2012 and has a client base of circa 400 clients (‘WideCells Brasil’).  This enables us to penetrate the Brazilian cord blood banking market, which is projected to be worth US$445 million by 2023, the largest in South America's booming stem cell industry.  This crucially provides us with established revenues.  Initial stem cell collection is charged at US$1,000, which includes the first year's storage fee, with annual storage charged at US$150 per annum thereafter.  This fee is normally extended over a number of decades providing recurring revenues for the Group.  Customers can also purchase a long-term storage plan (usually 5 or 10 years), providing excellent visibility on earnings.

“Following the success of this, we are set to launch the Institute of Stem Cell Technology ('ISCT'), our second stem cell retrieval, processing and storage facility, which is located at the University of Manchester Innovation Centre in the UK.  This will enable us to primarily target the European market, with additional potential for the Middle-East and Africa, thus significantly expanding our geographic reach.  We look forward to providing our shareholders with updates on the official launch of the ISCT in the near future.   

“Aside from storage and processing, the creation of the ISCT and the attention we have attracted for driving development within the stem cell industry has resulted in us identifying a new revenue opportunity for the Group: stem cell research.  Our state-of-the-art facility in Manchester and team of leading stem cell scientists have been appointed by Qigenix, a California-based clinical stage medical device company, to undertake research on its behalf, testing a new laser technology designed to increase the homing and integration of stem cells.  This will secure £100,000 for the Group, some of which we have already received, and crucially unlocks a new stream of revenue we had not initially expected at the time of our listing. 

“Our third and final division is WideAcademy, which is focussed on education and training.  This will, we believe, be a major component in supporting the future growth of our company and the stem cell industry as a whole.  We believe there is a critical need for trustworthy, authentic and digestible content focussed on the stem cell industry, which caters to medical and industry professionals and potential consumers.  Knowledge is power, and by having the necessary resources available we intend to help people make informed choices relating to stem cell technologies and treatments and ultimately promote greater understanding of the stem cell industry globally.  We have an impeccable team driving this division, which includes Alan Greenberg, former Director of Education at Apple, and with development plans for roll-out currently being finalised, I look forward to the opportunities ahead.

“With a unique service offering, defined structure through which we can rapidly grow our business, a rapidly expanding global market, multiple revenue streams, and a world class team with proven skills and experience both at an industry and commercial level, we are poised for growth. 

“Finally, I would like to thank our shareholders for the support they have shown our business since listing.  We are committed to keeping our investors updated with developments relating to our business, and in line with this, I would like to take this opportunity to personally invite shareholders to join us at a private investor event we are hosting on Wednesday 12 July from 5.30pm at the offices of Shard Capital, 23rd Floor, 20 Fenchurch St, London, EC3M 3BY.   If you would like to register for this event please RSVP to shareholderenquiries@stbridespartners.co.uk with "WideCells Shareholder Event" in the subject line.”

**ENDS**

For further information, please visit the Company's website www.widecellsgroup.com, follow us on Twitter @WideCells_Group or contact:

WideCells Group

CEO - João Andrade

Tel:  +351 919 033 171

Smaller Company Capital Ltd

Broker - Jeremy Woodgate & Rupert Williams

Tel: +44 (0) 20 3651 2912

Shard Capital Partners LLP

Broker - Damon Heath & Erik Woolgar

Tel: +44 (0) 207 186 9950

St Brides Partners Ltd

PR - Elisabeth Cowell & Charlotte Page

Tel: +44 (0) 20 7236 1177

Notes to Editors

WideCells Group PLC is building an integrated stem cell services company, focused on making stem cell treatments accessible and affordable.  In June 2017, the Group was ranked as the 21st most disruptive company globally by DISRUPT 100, an annual index celebrating the businesses with the most potential to influence, change or create new global markets.

The Directors believe that the use of cord blood stem cells for transplant will drive one of the next important phases in medicine and is therefore developing market leading products in complementary, strategic areas which are designed to take advantage of substantial market opportunities in one of the fastest growing segments in the healthcare industry. 

With this in mind, the Group has created three divisions:

  • CellPlan: the world’s first stem cell healthcare insurance plan with financial cover for medical treatment, travel and accommodation expenses and concierge service to manage the treatment process
  • WideCells: the Institute of Stem Cell Technology has been established and is based in the University of Manchester Innovation Centre to focus on stem cell research and regenerative medicine. WideCells also has international cryogenics divisions specialising in stem cell storage.
  • WideAcademy: developing an education and training division to promote awareness of the benefits of stem cell storage across the global general practice community.

WideCells Group has built an experienced senior management team that has been integral to the development of its growth and business to date.  

Stem Cell Fast Facts:

  • Cord blood (which is taken from the umbilical cord) provides the most effective source of stem cells for families due to it being simple, safe and painless to collect relative to other sources of stem cells such as bone marrow – WideCells will focus on promoting the collection and storage of this.
  • Since 2005, there has been a 300% increase in the number of illnesses that can be treated using stem cells
  • 82 illnesses can currently be treated using stem cell procedures
  • Despite initial storage often costing no more than a few £thousand, actual treatment can cost in the £hundreds of thousands

Sources

WideCells Group PLC