Merlin Biosciences was founded in 1996 by Christopher Evans. The aim of the company was to raise funds from investors to help support small, innovative bioscience companies. Merlin Biosciences is now known as Excalibur Fund Managers.
Serious Fraud Office Investigation
In September 2005 Merlin Biosciences was placed under investigations by the Serious Fraud Office and the City of London Police following claims that around £2.5m was misappropriated from company funds to invest in Energist and Miracle Light. A four year investigation ensued but was subsequently dropped with the Serious Fraud Office stating it would "not be bringing any charges as a result of its investigation into the affairs of Merlin Biosciences. The Serious Fraud Office launched its enquiries in 2005 following a referral from the Financial Services Authority. Following a detailed review of the evidence gathered in the course of a thorough investigation, it has been concluded that there is insufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction."
- Merlin Biosciences was a donor to the Science Media Centre in 2002, 2003 and 2004 according to the SMC.
- Martin Walton - Managing Director and Chief Executive Director.
- Christopher Evans - Founder, Fund Manager, and Group Chairman.
- Shafia Zahoor - Finance Director.
- Mark Clement - Managing Director of European Operations.
- Brenig Preest - Investment Director.
- Berkeley Square House
- Berkeley Square
- London, W1J 6BD
- United Kingdom
- Phone: 44 20 7887 7642
- Fax: 44 20 7887 7650
- Excalibur website - http://excalibur-group.co.uk
- Heather Tomlinson, 'Fraud inquiry at pioneering biotech firm', 27 September 2005.
- Alistair Dawber, 'Sir Christopher Evans in the clear as SFO gives up fraud inquiry', The Independent, 13 November 2009.
- Data from Internet Archive holdings of the Science Media Centre website, 2002-2013.
- Apr 2003 http://web.archive.org/web/20030625193943/http://www.sciencemediacentre.org/aboutus/fundingsystem.html
- Nov 2003 http://web.archive.org/web/20040214043237/http://www.sciencemediacentre.org/funding.htm
- Oct 2004 http://web.archive.org/web/20041205182639/http://www.sciencemediacentre.org/funding.htm
- 'Company Overview of Excalibur Fund Managers Limited', Bloomberg, accessed 7 July 2016.