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Discovering a formula for business acumen; Prof Jo Bradwell.

In November, Prof Jo Bradwell sold the majority of the shares in the medical diagnostics company which he founded to private investment group Nordic Capital. The company - The Binding Site Ltd - is one of the Midlands most successful companies. Prof Bradwell retains a small shareholding and remains on the board.

The value of the sale is undisclosed, but it will have been a considerable sum. In 2009, The Binding Site's auto-immune operation was sold to the Werfen Group for pounds 80 million.

Prof Bradwell, 66, is a professor of medicine at Birmingham University where The Binding Site leases laboratories and does much of its research. Its headquarters, employing 350, people is in Calthorpe Road, Edgbaston. It has offices and distributors all over the globe, with a major operation in San Diego, USA.

The Binding Site was founded by Prof Bradwell in 1983, with a range of clinical research products. It has continued to grow and expand, launching new, high-value, knowledge-based products and opening new offices.

It traces its roots back to Birmingham University's Medical School where a group of researchers first started looking for innovative ways to produce antibodies.

That work evolved into a private company which was successful in producing highly sensitive and specific antibodies for the detection of cancers and other serious disorders It has been consistently profitable, and has won the Queens Award for Export Achievement, and the Queens Award for Enterprise twice. In November the company won the EEF Midlands Outstanding Export Award, sponsored by UK Trade and Industry. Ninety per cent of the company's products are sold outside of the UK, with 47 per cent being sold in the US.

Prof Bradwell is an enthusiastic and accomplished climber. In August 2010 he successfully climbed the 3,404m Pico De Aneto in the Pyrenees, and has been on several expeditions to the world's highest mountain ranges in the Himalayas and South America.

He is chairman and founder of the Birmingham Medical Research Expeditionary Society which was begun in 1977 when several young doctors started climbing together and, to help fund their expeditions, devised research projects to study the effects of mountain sickness. Since then the society has prospered as a medical research charity, backed by pharmaceutical companies and research funds.

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From left: Sir Adrian Cadbury, Sir Dominic Cadbury and Prof Jo Bradwell at The Binding Site in 2007 after the company had just been given a Queens Award
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Jan 19, 2012
Words:404
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