WideCells Group

Corporate Charity Commitment

News Release | News Room

12 July 2017

WideCells Group PLC (‘WideCells Group’ or ‘the Group’)

Corporate Charity Commitment

WideCells Group PLC, the healthcare services company focused on providing stem cell services and ground-breaking insurance for stem cell treatment, is delighted to announce that it has finalised a corporate charity engagement plan as part of its active corporate social responsibility programme.  Reflecting his commitment to promoting medical development and health and well-being at both a corporate and personal level, the Group’s Chief Executive Office (‘CEO’) João Andrade has commenced training to participate in a 135 mile ultramarathon in the Californian desert in order to raise money for three primary charities: BigMoose, a non-profit organisation which aims to tackle homelessness by training homeless people as baristas, the Portuguese Association Multiple Sclerosis (‘SPEM’ – the Sociedade Portuguesa de Esclerose Múltipla) and CHAMPS Appeal, which helps children with Hirschsprung's Disease and bowel/bladder diversions.

A blog post covering Mr. Andrade’s training and the Company’s charitable commitments can be found here: http://widecellsgroup.com/newsroom/blog 

The Challenge

WideCells Group hopes to raise £50,000 in the first year of its charity commitment programme to support three charities.

The achieve this, the Group is finalising a comprehensive sponsorship package and CEO João Andrade has commenced training so that he can participate in an ultramarathon often referred to as “The World’s Toughest Foot Race”, covering 135 miles.  The start line is at Badwater, Death Valley, California, which marks the lowest elevation in North America at 85m below sea level, and finishes at Whitney Portal, which is the trailhead to the Mt. Whitney summit, the highest point in the contiguous United States, at 2,530m above sea level. The Badwater 135 course covers three mountain ranges for a total of 4,450m of cumulative vertical ascent and 1,859m of cumulative descent.

Application to the race is, and always has been, by invitation only.  Applicants must meet a number of qualifying standards, including the completion of at least three running races of at least 100 continuous miles in length, at least one of which must be completed within 12 months of running Badwater.  Accordingly, Mr. Andrade hopes to be in a position to participate in the race in 2020.

The Charities


BigMoose, is a non-profit organisation with a very clear intention – to do fun stuff that inspires people to live better, healthier, kinder lives.  The charity organises multiple fundraising and charity events to support a spectrum of causes and is currently focussed on tackling homelessness in Cardiff, Wales.  They intend to do this through a Big Moose café, which has been founded in Cardiff to train people who are currently homeless as baristas, so that they have the skills and support to start a new life.  For further information please visit: www.bigmoose.co

SPEM - the Portuguese Association Multiple Sclerosis

SPEM is focussed on improving the living conditions of Multiple Sclerosis patients and the people who live with them.  MS is a chronic inflammatory and degenerative disease affecting the Central Nervous System (CNS).  It is a disease that often occurs between 20 and 40 years of age and currently affects an estimated 2,500,000 people around the world, with more than 8,000 in Portugal alone.   The charity is based in Lisbon, Portugal and has a close affinity with the Group’s operations given that stem cells are currently being used in clinical trials to treat MS.  Furthermore, the Group’s CellPlan Limited division, which recently launched a first-of-its-kind stem cell healthcare insurance plan in the UK, is based in Porto, Lisbon.  For further information please visit: www.spem.pt


CHAMPS Appeal helps children with Hirschsprung's Disease and bowel/bladder diversions.  They give solace to children by providing activities with other children like them, whilst parents/carers get the opportunity to relax and discuss their family’s journey with like-minded families. For further information please visit: www.champsappeal.co.uk

WideCells Group CEO, João Andrade, said, “WideCells Group is committed to supporting future medical development to ensure a brighter future for healthcare globally.  We have already proven this through our work to make stem cell treatment more accessible and affordable worldwide, which resulted in us being ranked as the 21st most disruptive company globally by DISRUPT 100.  Nonetheless, as our shareholders will know, we are committed to driving and supporting change at all levels.  Accordingly, we are delighted to be working with and supporting a number of very worthy charities as part of our Corporate Social Engagement plan.  These charities have already positively benefitted thousands of lives and we want to help them to continue their incredible work.  That is why I have personally undertaken the challenge to run the Badwater ultramarathon.  I am passionate about transforming the future medical landscape both within my capacity as CEO of WideCells Group and personally.  Now is this time for change and we look forward to being at the fore of this.”


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 – Charlotte Page & Olivia Vita

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.

With this in mind, it 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.

The 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


WideCells Group PLC