Senior Business Manager

In the Crick's Commercial Translation Team.

Part of Crick Operations.

The successful candidate will have all encompassing experience in translational science management or technology transfer in a biomedical discipline.

Key information

Job reference
Up to £70,000 per annum, subject to skills and experience.
Application close date
29 September 2021, 23:59 BST
Hours per week
36 (full time)
Posted 13 September 2021

This is a full time position funded till 30th June 2024 on Crick terms and conditions of employment.

The Crick is supportive of flexible working and some working from home



The Francis Crick Institute (the Crick) is a biomedical discovery institute dedicated to understanding the fundamental biology underlying health and disease. Its work is helping to understand why disease develops and to translate discoveries into new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat illnesses such as cancer, heart disease, stroke, infections, and neurodegenerative diseases.

An independent organisation, its founding partners are the Medical Research Council (MRC), Cancer Research UK, Wellcome, UCL (University College London), Imperial College London and King’s College London.

The institute is a leading centre of biomedical research and innovation. It promotes connections between researchers and disciplines and between academic institutions, healthcare organisations and businesses.  Dedicated to research excellence, the institute has the scale, vision and expertise to tackle the most challenging scientific questions underpinning health and disease. It has a strong national role — training scientists and developing ideas for public good. 

The Crick has placed an emphasis on promoting an openness to translation within the institute, supported by a small embedded translation team who are fully integrated with the day to day scientific life of the institute, and provide easy access to expertise and mechanisms to convert discoveries toward applications. The focus of the translation team is on speed and the reduction of barriers to maximise the uptake and exploitation of ideas to real-world impact.

In November 2019, LifeArc joined with the Crick to create the LifeArc-Crick Translation Fund. The Fund will make £5m available over five years to support Crick scientists in progressing promising innovation to the point where the project can attract follow-on, larger scale investment and development. LifeArc will collaborate with Crick Group Leaders and the Crick translation team to identify projects in areas aligned to LifeArc’s strategy and with Crick’s discovery science strengths.

Role summary

This is a senior role within Translation with responsibility for independently delivering high quality technical insight when supporting researchers in relation to identification of science that has the potential for patient impact.  It requires facilitating and supporting the translational science and commercialisation of that science including the identification and securing of intellectual property (IP) protection and delivery of commercial licenses and spinouts.  It also includes appropriate project management of the LifeArc-Crick Translation Fund (the “Fund”).

The role includes the provision of advice to researchers on all aspects of translation and IP management and commercialisation.  The successful candidate will manage their own portfolio projects and technologies under development and undertake appropriate project management of the Fund including liaising with LifeArc to ensure achievement of appropriate milestones and potential for additional projects.    Further the candidate is expected to undertake appropriate negotiations to ensure that any activity shall maximise impact and speed of health benefit.

The successful candidate will have all encompassing experience in translational science management or technology transfer in a biomedical discipline.

Key responsibilities

These include but are not limited to:

Regarding the Fund:

1) Work with existing Fund grant holders to:

  • help the PI and the team to plan the activities required to deliver the project and communicate them e.g. prepare and maintain Gantt charts, progress reports, etc.

  • co-ordinate and manage the different activities required such as outsourcing and working with collaborators.

  • help the PI to co-ordinate activities to ensure the timely delivery of milestones.

  • manage the reporting requirements for the PI ensuring reports are delivered to the JSC / other oversight groups on time.

  • help with budget management and planning.

  • help with risks identification and mitigations plans.

  • potentially help grant holders prepare for the next stage of funding e.g. preparing grant applications or business plans.

2 ) Develop relationships with potential new applicants to the scheme.

  • be an advocate for the scheme in the Crick, raising the profile to all groups across the Crick.

  • Working with potential applicants and the translation team to identify if the scheme is the best funding route for the project and if not, advising on what alternatives might be possible

  • Where appropriate support the PI in writing an application to the LifeArc/Crick fund.

More general within the Crick:

3) Establishing and maintaining links with relevant researchers and other academic institutions.

  • Promote the profile and reputation of Translation with academics across the Crick relevant to the Research Area.

  • Encourage flow of potential commercial technologies from the researchers by raising awareness of commercial opportunities.

4) Establishing and maintaining commercial relationships.

  • Develop and maintain relationships with commercial organisations, promoting the Translation activities and opportunities for IP development and licensing.

  • Improve and develop collaboration between the Crick and new or existing business clients and develop business networks.

  • Enhance the presence of the Crick in the commercial sector through attendance at meetings, conferences and membership of professional bodies, such as the Licensing Executives Society

5) Main point of contact for CRUK Commercial Partnerships.

6) Intellectual property and project management.

  • Identify and assess scientific and market feasibility of new technologies and initiate patent protection as applicable, facilitating communications between the inventor and patent attorney.

  • Advise on appropriate software and database licences to be used by researchers when uploading code, databases etc to different platforms including GitHub

  • Administer patent prosecution and maintenance, liaising with the inventor and patent attorney.

  • Ensure necessary agreements are in place for licensing of intellectual property, both background and foreground, into spin-out companies or other licensees.

  • Complete revenue sharing and assignment agreements and negotiate revenue sharing with other academic institutions in the case of collaborative inventions.

  • Identify those technologies which would be synergistic if developed as a group, and which answer unmet market needs, and bring the relevant academics together to enhance the technology package.

  • Advise academics giving outside lectures on areas concerning IP issues.

  • Liaise with internal teams such as legal/finance/grants as appropriate

  • Maintain and update records of projects in patent and project database, Sophia and IPRIS.

7) IP Commercialisation

  • Determine and execute commercialisation strategies for emerging Crick IP and technologies. In the case of licensing opportunities this is likely to include:

  • Market assessment activities including primary and secondary market research.

  •  Preparation of technology marketing briefs for circulation through web sites, email and direct posting to potential licensees as soon as technology can be disclosed.

  • Identifying and approaching potential licensing partners.

  • Arranging meetings and assisting with presentation of technologies to potential licensees.

  • Leading negotiations and concluding all necessary agreements to license the technology, including evaluations, options and licences.

  • Post deal management - monitoring licensee progress with audits where necessary.

For spin-out opportunities, this is likely to include:

  • Market assessment activities including primary and secondary market research.

  • Advising founders on business plan construction and strategic direction. This will include activities such as identification of potential customers for the spin-out company’s products/services, determining clear route to market for the technology and assessment of gaps in the management team.

  • Preparing materials for presentation of spin-out company business case to relevant Crick directors and executive committees.

  • Once initial stage is approved, assist in development of full business plan suitable for fund- raising and assist, where required, in identification of potential investors.

  • If requested, represent the Crick on the board of the spin-out company.

  • Compilation and reporting of KPIs when requested.

Key experience and competencies

The post holder should embody and demonstrate our core Crick values: bold, imaginative, open, dynamic and collegial, in addition to the following:


Qualifications, experience and competencies:

  • Appropriate relevant first degree in a biological/medical science is essential

  • Comprehensive experience of working in a demanding and relevant technology commercialisation environment, with industrial experience preferable.

  • Have the ability to quickly grasp new scientific concepts and technologies and to identify where there may be translational potential and how this could be realized and can demonstrate expensive experience of this.

  • Comprehensive experience in legal and technical aspects of negotiating and concluding various types of agreements.

  • Have a broad understanding of the therapeutic development process and of the academic, biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry marketplace.

  • Be able to communicate efficiently and credibly, both verbally and in writing, with a range of stakeholders, including scientists, industry and with colleagues. In addition, have the ability to influence and constructively challenge key individuals within the organisation and across the scientific community at all levels.

  • Have experience or knowledge of:

    • IP evaluation and protection as it relates to the life sciences and the related regulatory environment

    • management and licensing in an academic or commercial environment

    • identification and due diligence of potential investments

  • Knowledge and experience of creating spin-outs and evaluating the best routes to achieve translation and commercialisation of life sciences innovation.

  • Have a successful track record of undertaking negotiations to conclusion.

  • Have project management experience including the ability to manage and progress multiple projects efficiently.

  • Be able to work independently and proactively but also as part of teams where there may be multiple expectations and drivers.


Qualifications, experience and competencies:

  • Post-graduate qualification

  • Industry experience