Cambridge Cognition finds local partner for China expansion

Brain health technology developer Cambridge Cognition announced an expansion in the Chinese market through a strategic partnership with Luca Healthcare on Thursday.

The AIM-traded firm said it signed an exclusive licence agreement with Luca to commercialise its suite of cognitive assessment tools in China, for both the pharmaceutical and healthcare markets.

It said the partnership would provide it with an “efficient and low-risk” geographic expansion, while leveraging its recent projects to go live in an Amazon Web Services (AWS) data centre in China, and implement a range of Chinese languages.

Cambridge Cognition would be paid through a mix of milestone payments and royalties.

As well as a commercial licence, the partnership included the opportunity to collaborate on co-developments to improve the solutions of both companies.

The board described China as the second-most active clinical trial market in the world after the United States, having hosted nearly 10,000 industry-sponsored trials in the last five years, with 14% being in central nervous system conditions.

It said the healthcare market opportunity in China for cognitive impairment diagnostics could also be considerable, with nearly 40 million people affected by mild cognitive impairment and nearly 10 million living with Alzheimer’s disease.

Cambridge Cognition said it had been “laying the groundwork” to successfully capitalise on the “significant” market opportunity since 2019, by establishing a dedicated service in the region, delivered from a secure cloud infrastructure provided by AWS.

It also developed task variants in the most commonly-spoken languages of Cantonese and Mandarin, and the written language of simplified Chinese, and built on an existing relationship with Fudan University in Shanghai.

“The Chinese pharmaceutical and healthcare markets offer a significant commercial opportunity for Cambridge Cognition, and we have partnered with Luca Healthcare to capitalise on this,” said chief executive officer Matthew Stork.

“The team at Luca Healthcare have impressed us with their speed to commercialise other digital healthcare solutions, working with leading pharmaceutical companies in the region and, as a result, building a fast growth business.”

At 1236 GMT, shares in Cambridge Cognition Holdings were up 6.04% at 127.25p.

Reporting by Josh White for