Biotech venture sets up new Liverpool city region base

Biotech firm Entropix to set up new base at The Heath Business and Technical Park in Runcorn as it gets set to expand its business. Tony McDonough reports

Dr Rob Rule
Dr Rob Rule, co-founder of biotech firm Entropix


Biotech firm Entropix is looking to accelerate its expansion plans after it relocates to The Heath Business and Technical Park.

Entropix, which is moving to The Heath from Sci-Tech Daresbury, develops Enzymes for the manufacture of products including pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, detergents and food.

It says it is moving to The Heath because the location is one of the few places in the UK, outside of universities, that has specialist laboratory facilities. It is, adds co-founder Dr Rob Rule, the ideal place to start expanding.

“There are lots of fancy new high-tech buildings in business parks around the country,” he said. “But outside of universities there aren’t too many lab spaces which have the kind of specialist facilities a biotech business such as ours needs.

“Of course, you can create a bespoke lab but for businesses like ours starting a lab from scratch is immensely expensive. Finding a place like The Heath with the infrastructure and technical support network already in place is massively helpful.” 

For the past 18 months Entropix has been located at ITAC-Bio in Sci-Tech Daresbury at Warrington.

It was recommended by another science business which moved to The Heath last year, Liverpool ChiroChem. Its chief executive Dr Paul Colbon has called on the Government to build more science parks with Heath-style facilities to meet the requirements for R&D.

Dr Rule added: “We are different from LCC which operates in the chemistry sector whereas we are a biotech company. However, we both need very specialist lab facilities to undertake our research. 

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“Although we don’t conduct hazardous research, which The Heath is also geared up to support, we do need labs with good quality water services, ventilation, electrical access and high quality flooring.”

Entropix is scheduled to move to The Heath in October. It will be operating from the same building where Dr Rule started his career after he graduated from university and joined ICI, which was located at The Heath up until 1999.

He said: “I started out as a scientist with ICI but for the past 25 years have been running science businesses.  Relocating to The Heath will be going full circle and a bit like coming home.”

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