Skip to content

Germany’s BioNTech to buy London AI startup InstaDeep for £562m

InstaDeep BioNTech

London-based AI company InstaDeep has entered into an agreement to be acquired by the German tech firm BioNTech in a £562m deal.

Founded in 2015, InstaDeep has become one of Britain’s most promising tech firms, scoring major money deals for its Series A and Series B funding rounds, including a $100m investment in January 2022 that saw participation from Google, as well as BioNTech.

InstaDeep’s AI tools have been used across the biotech, logistics, and electronic manufacturing industries. The African-founded, London-headquartered company has become a major provider of automation tools for business.

The German biotech firm has proceeded with the acquisition of InstaDeep, following prior investments, to fully incorporate its AI technology into drug discovery and medical development.

“The acquisition of InstaDeep allows us to incorporate the rapidly evolving AI capabilities of the digital world into our technologies, research, drug discovery, manufacturing, and deployment processes,” said BioNTech co-founder and CEO, Prof. Ugur Sahin.

“Our aim is to make BioNTech a technology company where AI is seamlessly integrated into all aspects of our work.”

The acquisition will see 240 employees join the BioNTech workforce across its AI, machine learning, bioengineering, data science, and software development departments.

“AI is progressing exponentially and our mission at InstaDeep has always been to make sure it benefits everyone,” said Karim Beguir, co-founder and CEO of InstaDeep.

“Together, we envision building a world leader that combines biopharmaceutical research and AI with the aim to design next-generation immunotherapies that enhance medical care – thus, helping fight cancer and other diseases.”

The upfront cost of the acquisition is around £362m, with an additional £200m to be paid to InstaDeep shareholders should certain “performance-based milestones” be reached.