Novartis joins White City’s “booming life sciences ecosystem”


Aerial view of White City

Global pharmaceutical company Novartis is to move its UK headquarters to White City, joining London’s emerging life sciences cluster.

 The company will relocate to The WestWorks at White City Place, opposite Imperial’s White City Campus, by January 2020. 

Novartis is the latest in a series of life sciences companies - including Autolus, and Synthace - to take up residence in the region, which is quickly emerging as the capital’s latest hub for life sciences research and innovation. 

RebelBio, the world's first life sciences accelerator, is based at Imperial White City Incubator

Imperial plays a key role in the life sciences ecosystem at White City. In 2016, a study commissioned by MedCity, urges life sciences businesses to co-locate with Imperial researchers at the College’s White City Campus to ensure that London meets the future needs of industry. 

The campus co-locates multidisciplinary research with global businesses, new start-ups and fast-growth technology companies on an unprecedented scale to translate discoveries into benefits for society. 

Its pioneering facilities include the Translation and Innovation Hub (I-HUB), which provides a space for corporate partners, fast-growth and start-up companies to work side-by-side. The Molecular Sciences Research Hub (MSRH), which opened earlier this year, provides a new research home for Imperial's Department of Chemistry and brings together researchers from a range of backgrounds address common challenges in areas such as energy, healthcare, and sustainability. The Michael Uren Biomedical Engineering Research Hub which is currently under construction, will combine the latest medical research and engineering to improve the treatment and diagnosis of diverse medical conditions, from finding ways to cure dementia to creating bionic limbs. 


We look forward to working together as neighbours and partners to create a new place for innovation, experimentation and growth. Professor Alice Gast President of Imperial College London

Novartis is a close collaborator with the College, funding research including a study looking the early stages of the development of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease as well as research that could lead to better treatments for women with ovarian cancer. 

Haseeb Ahmad, Novartis UK Country President, said: “The nature of healthcare and medicine is changing and as we pivot towards becoming a focused medicines company, powered by digital and data, we want to be closer to our customers and partners, and become better networked in the healthcare and life science ecosystem. 

“White City is quickly becoming one of the UK’s life sciences and technology districts, and the ethos of The WestWorks campus complements how we work to deliver on our strategy to reimagine medicine.”

Professor Alice Gast, President of Imperial College London said: “Novartis adds to the sense of momentum around a new life sciences cluster in White City. We look forward to working together as neighbours and partners to create a new place for innovation, experimentation and growth. Together our efforts will benefit the White City community, the British economy and global health.”

Professor Jonathan Weber, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, said: “The White City ecosystem, and its emerging life-science’s cluster, is driving unprecedented opportunities for Imperial and our partners to transform healthcare and medicine. Our proximity to Novartis will greatly enhance work to tackle some of the most pressing health challenges of our time.”


Deborah Evanson

Deborah Evanson
Communications Division

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