DUBLIN-BASED clinical research firm Venn Life Sciences has begun trading on London's Alternative Investment Market.
The company's chief executive is Tony Richardson, who was a co-founder of Dublin-based medical firm Alltracel.
Venn, which was acquired last month by UK investment vehicle Armscote for almost £2.9m (€3.5m) has raised £2.5m to fund working capital requirements.
The firm provides consulting and clinical trial services to pharmaceutical, biotechnology and medical device companies and has operations in France, the Netherlands, Ireland as well as a branch office in Switzerland.
The immediate objective of Venn is to expand its coverage to other European countries through strategic acquisitions.
It believes there's an opportunity to combine a number of small clinical research outsourcing (CRO) groups in Europe to build a mid-sized CRO.
It says the company will be in a position to provide phase II to phase IV trials across a range of principle disease areas.
"Market drivers, such as increased life expectancy, pipeline pressure for drug companies, increasing numbers of disease indicators and health economics, would suggest that the research environment will remain active," according to the company.
"Europe remains an essential but challenging location for sponsors to conduct trials," it added.
Mr Richardson said the AIM flotation is the "first step" in implementing its strategy.
Mr Richardson was chief executive of Alltracel when it was sold in 2008 for about $40m by US firm Hemcon.